We recently talked about Nemesis Fighting from the Dominican Republic being the latest fly by night promoter to fuck fighters over. That first post doesn’t even scratch the surface of how sketchy things got. Now between articles on MMA Weekly, Sherdog, and Keith Jardine’s webpage we have many more details. MMA Convert summarizes for your convenience:
No commission or governing body to oversee the event? Check.
Multiple last-minute opponent changes? Check.
Completely unorganized weigh-ins? Check.
No staff to direct the fighters or the event? Check.
Dominican fighters rubbing themselves down with Ben Gay? Check.
No timekeeper? Check.
No doctors or medical professionals? Check.
Random guy with “toolbox of band-aids?” Check.
Random guy wakes up unconscious fighter with bucket of water? Check.
Promoters fails to show at designated time and meeting place to disperse checks? Check.
Once confronted by card full of angry fighters, promoters writes them all bad checks? Check.
Even angrier group of Puerto Rican fighters hunts down same promoter wanting to “drag him to the beach and slice him up” for stiffing them a couple grand? Check.
Attendance figures from the show varies from 30 to 300 but whatever the real number was, it was clearly nowhere near enough to cover the ‘UFC level’ paydays promised fighters. While some (like me) wonder why any of the big name fighters ever got on a plane – let alone into a cage – without a large chunk of their money in their possession, others like Keith Jardine are more zen about the situation:
“I had a conversation with myself as I’m sitting there. I’m like, ‘Well, I don’t really know if I’m gonna get paid here or not. This thing’s a mess.’ I didn’t have gloves to fight in. I don’t even know if there’s a doctor for the fight, this and that,” Jardine said. “I mean, it’s about the love of fighting. It’s not about the business of the sport. At that point, I’m sure everybody had the same thought, and they went out and fought their hearts out. And that’s a beautiful thing.”
Jardine and his manager are currently trying to wrest away control of the event footage so they can try and raise some money off it for the fighters. Now that’s a beautiful thing! But what would have been more beautiful was if these fighters’ agents had protected their guys from this completely FUBAR event.
It seems to me the only thing Nemesis was capable of doing was tricking everyone into taking payment after the event – from the cage rental to the venue to the hotels and fighters. The whole thing would have collapsed the second someone insisted money had to be put on the table. And while some are crying because Big Government wasn’t there with a commission to protect people, in the end I blame the fighter agents who should have seen this coming a mile away.