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UFC 162: 'Outspoken' Tim Kennedy clears the air on low fighter pay ... sorta

Tim Kennedy clears up the remarks he recently made about low MMA fighter pay, but still proclaims it's "tragic" that he is one of the better paid athletes on the UFC roster and he still cant live solely off his fight earnings.

Esther Lin for Showtime

Tim Kennedy recently made some rather interesting comments about low fighter pay, specifically the amount of coin collected by combatants employed by Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), the world's leading (and wealthiest) mixed martial arts (MMA) organization.

The former Strikeforce middleweight described the pay as "pathetic" and insinuated garbage men make more than he does.

The comments came at a rather surprising time, seeing as how Kennedy is a few days away from making his Octagon debut at UFC 162 against Roger Gracie and isn't a "washout" or a fighter on his way out, such as Jacob Volkmann or John Cholish, who also had plenty to say about UFC's pay and insurance structure.

And though the U.S. Army Green Beret already apologized for his rant, he took the extra time to explain his remarks on a recent appearance on "The MMA Hour."

His words:

"I think the UFC knew what they were getting when they got me; and that's an outspoken, honest dude. Through the course of that interview with Grappler Talk, we were talking about how many people have second jobs. I am no different than most other MMA fighters. I have other sources of income because I can't live off MMA. And that was led into those comments. It was just an honest assessment of, here's the deductions that often occur after the fight, and that it's a lot less money than most people think."

When asked how much he deserved to be paid, Kennedy didn't have an exact number, but did say enough to where he didn't have to have other sources of income and to where he would be able to train and fight full time.

Furthermore, Tim says the irony of the whole situation is that he is one of the better paid fighters under the ZUFFA umbrella. But, the fact that he still isn't getting paid enough to live solely off his MMA income, is pretty "tragic."

He explains:

"I would love to be able to fight, and I think most fighters would say the same thing, at a level where we don't have to, you know, where I didn't have to run other businesses, or didn't have to be a soldier or I didn't have to, like Shane Carwin, be an engineer. We could just fight. But, it's hard. It's hard to fight two or three times a year and have all of your income come from that. It's not enough. And I'm one of the better paid fighters. That's weird, tragic, but, that's how it is."

And while UFC President Dana White blasted the outspoken middleweight for his remarks (see it here), it's safe to say an impressive winning performance at UFC 162 this Saturday night (July 6, 2013) would get Kennedy back in his employer's good graces.


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