Tony Ferguson was all ready to go last Friday as he made weight for his interim title fight with fellow lightweight contender Khabib Nurmagomedov. It was to be UFC 209’s co-main event on paper, but many fans saw it as the “people’s main event.”
After the debacle that occurred following Khabib’s untimely withdrawal from the card after being hospitalized due to a bad weight cut, Ferguson was left without a dance partner, and ultimately out of a decent pay day.
Ferguson addressed his compensation for making weight on Tuesday, when he says he received with wire transfer from the UFC into his bank account.
“It was like a slap to the face,” Ferguson told mmajunkie.com. “and it’s like, what is my worth to the UFC? Like, do I not fight enough? Do I not bleed enough for them?
UFC President Dana White had previously told reporters at a recent press conference that although the UFC “has never (paid a fighter their show money in the event of a cancelled fight)”, however White did confirm that “(Ferguson) got paid. He did get paid. Yeah, he did.”
But Ferguson says he received less than half of his contracted $250,000 show money for UFC 209.
“I did everything in my power that I could to show up on that scale, and that’s what I thought we were going to do… (THEN) this morning I got my wire, and I’m looking at it and I’m like, ‘What the frick, man?’ I’m like, ‘Seriously?’”
Ferguson (22-3) said he was speechless upon seeing the wire deposit. The 33-year-old lightweight contender stood to make $500,000 if he had competed and won at UFC 209.
A UFC official who requested anonymity stressed the fact that the promotion had no obligation to pay Ferguson anything, and that “El Cucuy” knew ahead of time what he was going to be paid even after the bout with Khabib had been cancelled.
“(Dana) was telling me he was taking a loss from this” Ferguson said, “and I’ll bet you he’s somewhere out on his boat, or doing something on his jet, laying $250,000 down on a craps table.”