After losing what even Donald Trump might call a small fortune on their first MMA showcase, it doesn’t come as much of a surprise that Affliction proposed a 50% pay cut for the fighters competing in their second event, tentatively planned for October. Given the purses Affliction coughed up their first time around, I’d say that even half of those amounts would still leave most of the bigger names on the card well compensated. But Josh Barnett, who emerged triumphant over Pedro Rizzo at Affliction “Banned”, says he will not accept any such pay cut, and dished a bit about facing Fedor Emelianenko as well:
“We asked him about a report from Dave Meltzer, claiming that Affliction VP Tom Atencio would allegedly ask fighters to take a 50% pay cut to work the Las Vegas show in October. Barnett replied by saying that he was not going to take a pay cut to fight.
In addition, when asked about whether or not heâ€™ll fight Fedor, Mr. Barnett said that itâ€™s not up to him as far as whether or not the fight gets booked. He wants to fight Fedor, but canâ€™t worry about the politics surrounding why the fight hasnâ€™t been booked.”
Its unfortunate to see that Barnett is so closed off to the idea of taking a pay cut, especially since another performance on American soil could only help his popularity with the more casual fan base. But lets not forget that this is the fight game and cash is always king, so I imagine Barnett simply feels that he could get just as big, if not a bigger pay day competing back in good old Japan. One can only hope for Affliction’s sake that Barnett’s premature offer refusal is not indicative of things to come from the rest of the scarce, but promising, Affliction roster.