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Paige VanZant wants Conor McGregor-type money to trickle down to all UFC fighters

Esther Lin/MMA Fighting

Paige VanZant got back into the win column this past weekend (Sat., Aug. 27, 2016) by knocking out Bec Rawlings with an impressive switch kick at UFC on FOX 21 in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, that had everyone raving.

See it again here.

The bout was VanZant’s first since her successful run on "Dancing with the Stars" when she came in second place, though many felt she should have been crowned this year's champion. Nevertheless, after getting an extended taste of life in show business, many wondered if Paige was going to pull a Gina Carano and test the Hollywood waters, perhaps staying there for good.

According to "12 Gauge" on The MMA Hour, though Hollywood pays more than her UFC salary, leaving wasn’t an option because she is a fighter first.

"That could have been the case because that is definitely true, Hollywood pays very well. But I am a fighter first and there are amazing things happening. Conor McGregor had an amazing payday and it’s about time. I don’t see that as an excessive amount of money with what he’s doing," she said. "It’s about right, and hopefully that starts trickling down and everybody starts making more money."

"Notorious" was paid a UFC-record $3 million for his rematch agaisnt Nate Diaz for their epic brawl at UFC 202 a few weeks ago (highlights). Nate, meanwhile, raked in an impressive $2 million for his piggy bank.

While there is no guarantee other UFC athletes will make that much coin in the foreseeable future, Paige says all fighters deserve more pay since UFC is already at the NFL’s level.

"I think we all deserve it, we are all professional athletes and we are fighting at a very, very high level. The UFC, I would compare it to the NFL, it’s on the kind of same playing field. Hopefully, eventually we start seeing athletes making a little more money to that anyone coming into UFC can actually make a living off just fighting for UFC."

To prove she simply isn’t blowing hot air, Paige recently passed up an opportunity to star in "Kickboxer: Vengeance" alongside Jean-Claude Van Damme to focus on her fight against Rawlings.

And it paid off, too, as she had perhaps the best performance of her young career, upping her rep as an ever-improving fighter.

Now we just have to wait to see if her salary increases, too.

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