“I made only $14k” Ex- UFC flyweight champ Demetrious Johnson lifts shocking lid on first title fight payment

The fighter pay issue at the UFC again came to the surface after Francis Ngannou left the organization. The Heavyweight was trying to reach a final contract for his fight against Jon Jones and beyond but couldn’t come to any agreement. Now former UFC Flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson comes forward with his horrific payout numbers.

To understand the severity of the Mighty Mouse’s contractual issues, we first need to consider what he brought in for the company. After the controversial draw against Ian McCall, Johnson went on to put together a super impressive 13-fight win streak beating the likes of Joseph Benavidez, Tim Elliott, and Henry Cejudo.

His undefeated title reign lasted for around 5 years and only ended when the two-division champ-to-be Henry Cejudo finally got the best of him via split decision. He still ranks second in the list of UFC fighters with the highest title defenses falling behind only Jon Jones (as controversial as his fights may be). Such a legend should expect a good payday for his fights, right?

Well the One FC fighter himself recently talked about his early payment stating, When I fought Dominick Cruz, I was under contract fighting for $14,000 to show and $14,000 to win. I lost to Cruz, so I made 14k. Then I fought Ian McCall in Australia and I was on the same contract. When I fought Ian McCall for the second time, I got a new contract that was bumped up to $20,000 [per show] and $20,000 [per win],”

His $20,000 dollar to show+win contract persisted till his Joseph Benavidez fight. His salaries progressed like this: $23,000 for Dodson, $26,000 for Moraga, and $30,000 for the Benavidez rematch. After this match, he finally got $150,000 to show and $50,000 to win the contract but still no access to PPV points.

Mighty Mouse wasn’t happy with this contract either, “That’s where a champion makes the most bang for their buck, the pay-per-view points,” Johnson added. “If you get on a card with Conor McGregor and he does 2.1 million buys, you just do the f****** math. You’re going to make a s***load of money. I never got the opportunity to do that.”

Currently, he is fighting for the One Championship.



Amir Khosru

431 articles

A graduate in Linguistics Studies from Jahangirnagar University, hailing from the city of Khulna(Bangladesh). Currently working as a Content Writer who covers Combat Sports. Passionate in a lot of fields including (But not limited to) Reading, Gaming, Travelling, Strolling, Food, UFC, Anime, and whatnot!


Leave a Comment