Conor made the same in 2013, nothing's changed - Ariel Helwani slams UFC for paying Paddy Pimblett $12K + $12K as UFC London purse

Ariel Helwani (left), Paddy Pimblett (center), Conor McGregor (right) [Center image via @theufcbaddy on Instagram]
Ariel Helwani (left), Paddy Pimblett (center), Conor McGregor (right) [Center image via @theufcbaddy on Instagram]

Paddy Pimblett made headlines across the MMA world when he revealed that he was paid $12,000 to show and $12,000 to win at UFC London. On his show The MMA Hour, journalist Ariel Helwani took the time to address Pimblett's shocking purse.

Paddy Pimblett revealed his payout for UFC London.📰

Helwani admitted that while a $12K + $12K purse is not unheard of for new fighters, it was shocking that the UFC paid 'The Baddy' such a meager sum given his massive popularity. The journalist pointed out that UFC raked in nearly $1 billion in revenue last year, and their deal with ESPN brings them close to $500 million in fixed revenue annually; add to this their fixed income from sponsorship and Fight Pass deals.

Ariel Helwani noted that Pimblett could've lost his fight, in which case he would have walked away with just $12,000. Reminiscing about Conor McGregor's early days in the UFC, Helwani said:

"If he [Pimblett] lost that fight, he was only getting $12,000... Incredible number for a name like him, for a guy who's making that kind of buzz... when you go back to Conor's second fight back in 2013... against Max Holloway... Conor made $12K and $12K. What that tells me is - all this talk from all these executives at the UFC is hogwash. Nothing's evolved, nothing's changed... nothing has changed in 9 years. It has to change!"

Per Helwani, Conor McGregor's fight against Max Holloway was before the UFC signed their deal with ESPN and in the early stages of their deal with FOX.

Watch Ariel Helwani speak about Paddy Pimblett's purse below:


Ariel Helwani believes Paddy Pimblett's manager may be protecting his own interests instead of securing best deal for 'The Baddy'

During the same segment, Helwani took aim at Pimblett's manager Graham Boylan, who is also the president of Cage Warriors. Boylan has a great working relationship with the UFC, who have signed nearly 100 fighters from Cage Warriors, including Conor McGregor and Michael Bisping. Helwani said:

"Why are you OK with a $12K and $12K deal for a guy as big as Paddy Pimblett?... Does it have anything to do with the fact that you've got a great streaming deal with Fight Pass?... you don't want to rock the boat because of one person and so the question I would wonder is, are you looking out for my best interest or you're looking out for the best interest of your relationship with the UFC?"

Helwani stated that if he were Paddy Pimblett's manager, he would approach Bellator MMA, who may have offered up to $50k. The veteran journalist believes that owing to his fame and the revenue generated at UFC London, 'The Baddy' should've been paid at least $500,000 by Dana White's promotion.

Paddy Pimblett getting pimped. Who manages these guys?…

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Edited by Avinash Tewari
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