FiveOuncesOfPain.com obtained salary figures for this past weekend’s UFC 91 event courtesy of the Nevada State Athletic Commission on Monday afternoon. According to NSAC’s official records, main eventers Brock Lesnar and Randy Couture were the top earners from this past Saturday’s fight card at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.
Lesnar, the UFC’s new heavyweight champion, received a documented total of $450,000. The breakdown of the former NCAA heavyweight champion’s NSAC reported salary is $250,000 as his guaranteed purse to “show” with an additional $200,000 paid out in the form of a win bonus.
Couture’s guarantee was also $250,000. However, if he had won, he would have received an additional $250,000 win bonus.
Proving that heavyweights are at a premium, former UFC heavyweight title challenger Gabriel Gonzaga received the third highest total on the card, clocking in with $110,000. The native Brazilian received a guarantee of $55,000 and an additional win bonus of $55,000 for his TKO victory over Josh Hendricks.
Hendricks, making his UFC debut, earned $8,000, which is considerably higher than the standard entry-level rate in the UFC of $3,000.
Lightweight Kenny Florian was the fourth highest earner on the card, receiving a total of $80,000 for his first round submission victory over Joe Stevenson. The number one contender for the UFC lightweight title was paid a guarantee of $40,000 and received an additional $40,000 as a win bonus. Stevenson was paid a total of $35,000 and could have doubled his pay with a victory.
Demian Maia preserved his undefeated record against Nate Quarry and earned $40,000 in the process ($20,000 paid as a guarantee and $20,000 paid as a win bonus). Quarry only received his guarantee of $25,000 and would have earned an additional $25,000 had he won.
UFC welterweight Dustin Hazelett is moving up in the world. In addition to receiving $60,000 for the “Submission of the Night,” Hazelett received a $14,000 guarantee as well as a $14,000 win bonus. His total reported take for the event is $88,000. Hazelett’s opponent, Tamdan McCrory, earned his guarantee of $10,000 and would have double his pay with a victory.
Aaron Riley, returning to the UFC for his third tour of duty not only received $60,000 for being a part of the “Fight of the Night,” but also was paid a total of $8,000 with $4,000 coming in the form of a guarantee and another $4,000 coming in the form of a win bonus. Jorge Gurgel, who received $60,000 as the other half of the “Fight of the Night,” was paid $10,000, per his guarantee. He would have received an additional $10,000 had he won.
Jeremy Stephens, the UFC 91 winner of the “Knockout of the Night,” earned a total of $60,000 for his dramatic third round TKO over the debuting Rafael dos Anjos. Stephens was paid a total of $16,000 with $8,000 paid in the form of a guaranteed purse to show and the other $8,000 being paid as a win bonus. Dos Anjos earned $4,000.
In the battle of the black belts, Mark Bocek received a total $18,000 for his win over Alvin Robinson. Bocek received $9,000 as a guarantee and an additional $9,000 as a win bonus. Robinson was compensated $7,000 for the losing effort and would have earned an additional $7,000 had he won.
In the night’s opener, Matt Brown received $16,000 as a late replacement against former Division I wrestler Ryan Thomas. Brown was guaranteed $8,000 to show and received an additional $8,000 for the win. Thomas was the lowest compensated fighter on the show, receiving only a documented $3,000.
As a disclaimer, it should be noted that these figures should not be considered as final salary figures for the fighters listed. Fighters are subject to additional income through sponsors, “Fight Night” bonuses, and discretionary bonuses awarded by the UFC that are not made public. The reported figures also do not include any bonus a fighter is contractually obligated to receive that is tied to total pay-per-view sales.