UFC Heavyweight Mark Hunt isn’t having it anymore.
After revelations from the U.S.Anti-Doping Association that Brock Lesnar had failed two drug tests, both pre and post fight, the “Super-Samoan” is taking action.
Hunt recently discussed his new plan to create a fighter’s union to combat what he sees as unfair play by the UFC brass. Amid the astronomical $4.2 billion sale price of the UFC to WME/IMG, Hunt is realizing that athletic value can only be attained through the collectivization of athletic interests.
“The way I see it, the Brock Lesnar doping thing is just another reason why we need a fighter’s association,” said Hunt via phone interview to MarkHunt.tv. “These guys are just making up the rules as they go.
“First the Reebok thing," he continued. "These guys have lined their pockets with our blood if you ask me. I mean, they deserve to get paid no doubt, they took the UFC from nothing into what it is today. But come on, most of the guys fighting get paid nothing and have no benefits."
(Mark Hunt KO's Antonio "Bigfoot" Silva at UFC 193 on Nov 15th 2015, Photo Credit: Zuffa, LLC)
Many fighters have expressed regret at the UFC’s decision to no longer allow them to procure sponsors for their walkout shirts and shorts. With Reebok as the premier sponsor of the UFC, all fighters must wear a Reebok uniform, crippling the earning potential of many who are financially forced to make MMA a part-time job.
“If you ask me, there needs to be a system where they at least run things past the fighters before making these decisions and the fighters can look out for each other," said Hunt. "We need an association where we can have our voices heard. We are a massive reason why fans watch the sport and we risk our health to do it.”
If MMA fighters aligned like their athletic counterparts in the NFL and NBA, it would be the first that a combat sports athletic union was ever actualized. Due to the highly competitive and individualized nature of fighting, there has never been any real cohesion for the widely discussed concept.
“To the fighters listening to this, I want them to get in touch with me via my Facebook page and we can get thing going," Hunt said. "I won’t name anyone until we sort it all out, but get in touch and let's make this happen.”