VanZant is scheduled to face Amanda Ribas at UFC 251 on ‘Fight Island’ next month but the appearance could well be the last of her six-year UFC tenure after she announced to ESPN that she would allow her contract to expire in a bid to gauge her worth on the open market. 

I have my heart set and nobody is going to change my mind that I’m fighting my contract out,” she told Ariel Helwani. “ don’t know where my future lies – I truly don’t. I think that’s kind of an exciting thing in my life.

“I’ve been with the UFC for six years now, and through this time I’m still – which is crazy – on the same contract before I fought Rose (Namajunas) at 22 years old, and I’m 26 now.”

Despite not exactly setting the world alight with her latest performances in the cage, VanZant has cultivated her personality outside of it significantly. She has appeared in the famed Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue, as well as being beamed into millions of living rooms each week as a contestant on the fiercely popular television series Dancing with the Stars.

VanZant’s issue with her employer stems from her belief that her contract in the UFC hasn’t grown at the same rate that her fame has outside of it.

“So somehow, through injury, being on ‘Dancing with the Stars,’ being on TV, work I’ve done throughout all of this, I’ve been on the exact same contract since I was 22,” she explained.

“That’s the contract I signed since I was 22. But I just feel like a regular extension isn’t what I want. I want to prove my worth and my value and I want a brand new contract.

“I’m really excited to get the opportunity and really test the free agency because how do you know what your value is unless you can go test it among the other sharks?”

Her 2.5 million Instagram followers have opened up a range of new financial options for VanZant, something she says gives her more leverage in negotiations. If the deal isn’t up to her standards, she says she is in the position to walk. 

“So I make $46,000 (to fight) and (another) $46,000 (to win),” VanZant said. “I’m not going to hide that because everyone knows. I can make way more money than that just promoting brands on Instagram, and that should say something.

“Why would I step away from all the amazing success that I have? I made more money on ‘Dancing with the Stars’ than I have in my entire UFC career combined – every fight, every win, every bonus. I love fighting. It’s what I love to do, and for this fight I dropped every single sponsor. I haven’t posted anything on Instagram. Nothing matters to me except this fight and it’s a clean slate for me.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You May Also Like

Mesut Ozil offers to pay wages of sacked mascot Gunnersaurus – but gets accused of playing ‘mind games’ with Arsenal board

It was reported on Monday that Jerry Quy, who had played the role of Gunnersaurus since its inception in 1993, was let go by Arsenal as they continue to make layoffs due to the impact the Covid-19 pandemic has had…

Beijing 2022 organizing committee joins IOC Executive Board meeting online

BEIJING – The Beijing Organizing Committee for the 2022 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games (BOCOG) joined the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Executive Board (EB) meeting online at its Shougang headquarters here on Wednesday and expressed its determination to ensure that…

Watford appoint Serbian manager Ivic on one-year contract

Watford have appointed Serbian manager Vladimir Ivic as the club’s new head coach on a one-year deal with the option of a further year, the Championship club have announced. Ivic, 43, made eight appearances for what was then called Serbia…

United cancel training for all players due to coronavirus

Manchester United cancelled training for all age groups on Tuesday following government advice on the coronavirus pandemic. United’s players have travelled into the Aon Training Complex in Carrington over the last few days despite the suspension of the Premier League season.…