Michael McDonald: I Won’t Fight The Best For The Pay I’m Getting

Michael McDonald: I Won’t Fight The Best For The Pay I’m Getting


In a bantamweight division thirsty for new contenders, 24-year-old Michael “Mayday” McDonald has been talked about as a possible bright spot. Despite having not competed since 2013, McDonald still sits at No. 5 in the rankings, and it seems as if he’s finally injury free, but that doesn’t mean he’ll be taking on any top 135-pounders soon.

Apparently the young fighter has lost some of his passion for the fight game, something that may be attributed to the lack of money he’s earned:

“I think everyone has expectations of being a professional athlete, and it’s just not exactly what you expect,” McDonald told ESPN.com (via MMA Fighting). “It wasn’t very fun after awhile. I didn’t feel any passion for fighting or the people around me. I’d say things started to get complicated after the Miguel Torres fight. Money was something I’ve never wanted to focus on, but when I look around and see people who I’m beating making a lot more than me, I started to feel angry and resentful.”

It seems as if money is definitely the biggest issue for “Mayday”, as he added that he’s not going to fight the best guys in the world with the pay that he’s given:

“You don’t want to go out and fight the best fighters in the world, then go home and wonder if you can pay your bills. It’s a problem I made by not getting paid well and fighting the best in the world,” said McDonald. “It’s a difficult situation but I think we’re going to get through it. There’s no way I’m going to fight top guys for the pay I’m getting, especially when they’re getting so much more than me.”

McDonald is 5-2 inside of the Octagon, with his only two loses coming at the hands of former champions Renan Barao, and Urijah Faber. However, if his passion, and love for the sport isn’t there he could find some problems.

Also, McDonald hasn’t fought since the UFC’s blockbuster, yet controversial deal with Reebok was signed, in which he would probably earn less from, most likely leading to more anger.

Fighter pay seems to be a growing topic in mixed martial arts (MMA). How big is the issue?

  • jmedno5891

    He doesnt want to be a champion I guess.

    • apocalypse123

      urijah faber was paid 200,000 compared to michael mcdonald’s 17,000. granted it was a losing effort, but if a guy is ranked number 5 without fighting in two years, that says something about his talent. that talent is worth more than what the ufc is paying him. they could triple his pay with no problem and i guarantee he’d be more motivated. look at all the injuries he’s had, he’s breaking his body for chump change. it’s not worth it right now. if they can give conor mcgregor a $100 milllion contract, they can pay michael mcdonald more than 17,000. green now, gold later.

      • jmedno5891

        I agree they don’t pay people what they are worth skill wise but if you know you are one of the best in the world you would stick to it and eventually the ufc will have no choice but increase the pay. If you keep beating the best guys in the world the ufc will have no excuse.

  • Fred Ettish’s long lost son

    Fighters complaining about pay in the media is like walking around your office complaining about your own pay to colleagues. The boss always gets wind of it and becomes resentful. Keep it to yourself, walk in to the gaffa’s office and explain the situation, speak honestly and fairly, face-to-face, you’ll get respect that way and more likely to get the money you need!