For the first time in eight years, the UFC is handing out bigger performance bonuses on fight night.
UFC officials confirmed to MMA Fighting that for UFC 262, the promotion will award $75,000 bonus checks, up from a cap of $50,000 that’s been in place since 2013. Globo reporter Raphael Marinho was first to report the news.
Fighters can win two different bonuses at a UFC event: “Performance of the Night” and “Fight of the Night.” On rare occasions, they take home both, and on others, “Fight of the Night” is not awarded. Before the cap was implemented, bonuses went as low as $25,000 and as high as $160,000.
Per ESPN.com, co-headliner Tony Ferguson was responsible for the bump after loudly asking for it during the UFC 262 press conference on Thursday at the Toyota Center, which hosts Saturday’s pay-per-view event. Ferguson takes on Beneil Dariush.
Per UFC officials, the increase is for now limited to Saturday’s event, which features a lightweight headliner with Michael Chandler and Charles Oliveira squaring off for the vacant title.
The raise comes one month after a small bump in guaranteed pay from the UFC’s new official apparel sponsor, Venum. Entry level fighters were guaranteed an additional $500, while defending champions got an extra $2,000.
The Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation, which oversees the state’s combative sports commission, does not make public official show and win salaries for MMA events like the UFC.