MMA Fighters Playing It Safe?

Image Taken From Wikimedia Commons. Image Taken From Wikimedia Commons.

Ultimate Fighting Championship Hall of Famer and former light heavyweight champion Chuck Liddell recently commented on Inside MMA what he believed to be the biggest problem in the sport of MMA:  Playing it safe.

"I understand it from a coach's standpoint and a manager's standpoint. I understand why you'd want to play it safe and win every fight. I get it. But do I want to watch a guy go beat a guy for four rounds and then ride him the fifth round not doing anything? You want to be worth more? Go out and fight. Have fun. Knock people out. Submit them. Beat them. I don't care. Just go try to finish a fight." - Said Liddell

Its common to see fighters adopt a game plan that may not seem "exciting" to some fans.  Performances that incorporate mostly wrestling for control on the ground may be effective in getting the win, but may not be what many MMA fans want to see.   It is an interesting topic that hopefully more more MMA athletes and commentators discuss.   MMA athletes have to consider salary's and endorsements that come from having winning records.   However, just as Liddell commented, an exciting fighter can make more money, even if it means that not all fights end up in the win column.

Below are the current salaries from UFC 162 published by the Nevada Athletic Commission:

Chris Weidman: $48,000 (includes $24,000 win bonus)
def. Anderson Silva: $600,000
*Silva’s win bonus would have been $200,000

Frankie Edgar: $240,000 (includes $120,000 win bonus)
def. Charles Oliveira: $21,000

Tim Kennedy: $90,000 (includes $30,000 win bonus)
def. Roger Gracie: $50,000

Mark Munoz: $84,000 (includes $42,000 win bonus)
def. Tim Boetsch: $37,000

Cub Swanson: $58,000 (includes $29,000 win bonus)
def. Dennis Siver: $33,000

Andrew Craig: $24,000 (includes $12,000 win bonus)
def. Chris Leben: $51,000

Norman Parke: $30,000 (includes $15,000 win bonus)
def. Kazuki Tokudome: $8,000

Gabriel Gonzaga: $58,000 (includes $29,000 win bonus)
def. Dave Herman: $23,000

Edson Barboza: $46,000 (includes $23,000 win bonus)
def. Rafaello Oliveira: $14,000

Brian Melancon: $16,000 (includes $8,000 win bonus)
def. Seth Baczynski: $16,000

Mike Pierce: $56,000 (includes $28,000 win bonus)
def. David Mitchell: $10,000

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