Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) continues its global expansion and as such, will expect its athletes to serve as brand ambassadors both inside and outside the cage. That means new and existing fighters will be subjected to closet inspections moving forward, as the promotion sniffs around for any lingering skeletons.
ZUFFA recently distributed comprehensive questionnaires asking its fighters to release personal information, according to MMA Junkie, including but not limited to criminal backgrounds and medical history, with the understanding that participants will waive doctor/patient confidentiality.
Working as an independent contractor for a privately-held organization allows the employer to impose certain restrictions that might not ordinarily fly in a public company, or perhaps one goverened by a union. Naturally, that circles back to the same old argument we've been having since day one.
Good luck convincing the millionaires of the roster to sign on.
UFC is no stranger to background controversy, thanks to a couple of high-profile cases involving registered sex offenders and neo-nazis. Those incidents may have led to heightened sensitivity involving fighters with a rocky past, evidenced by the recent dismissal of Will Chope.
But not everyone gets the same treatment across the board.
Lightweight slugger Abel Trujillo has twice plead guilty to domestic abuse with bodily injury but suffered no backlash from the promotion. That goes back to the organization's ability to wield its power arbitrarily, which could spell doom for some fighters who opt for full disclosure on these new consolidated questionnaires.
The price of fame!