In a court hearing on August 9, Judge Richard F. Bullware granted class assurances while proceedings. Cung Le v. Zuffa, LLC The lawsuit means that hundreds of MMA fighters could benefit from compensation resulting from it. that is important to its outcome.
In the time since Judge Boulware’s ruling, MMA enthusiasts, business analysts And legal experts are providing detailed insights into updated class litigation cases. Many have concluded that the provisions of a lawsuit aimed at UFC could permanently alter MMA career paths and the combat sports industry. If you want to break down the ruling MMA finance journalist John S. Nash states clearly and concisely in the article below:
Yesterday during a YouTube live chat, MMA analyst Luke Thomas joined the conversation and offered his thoughts on the verdict. Thomas has outlined several important future effects this lawsuit could have on the UFC; Check out the full live stream below.
Luke Thomas in his UFC action class outfit.
The first thing Thomas pointed out on stream was that the court ruled that the UFC attorneys’ arguments were not only unfavorable, but also unfavorable. But still not very persuasive.
Thomas: Court ruling says UFC attorney’s arguments ‘extremely unconvincing’
“I mean, how can I say this? [Judge Boulware] The UFC lawyers’ arguments were found to be extremely unconvincing. Not even convinced. no matter what the persuasive thing is He found that their arguments were the opposite,” says Thomas. “There was a competitive class that he endorsed. And that’s about 1,200 fighters, unless they don’t participate. And now you’re literally talking billions of dollars, I mean $5 billion off the table? Not really.”
Thomas is citing an estimate of the litigation settlement requested by the plaintiffs in this case. That ranges from $811 million to $1.6 billion in payments to thousands of fighters who are eligible for compensation. Money to the Plaintiff up to three times the amount sought in the United States Court of Justice.
Here’s why an estimated $5 billion is off the table. The amount is too high for the UFC, of course, but like John Nash, Thomas is convinced that class action compensation is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the consequences of litigation.
The judge disagreed with UFC ‘coercive contracts’ for MMA fighters
According to Thomas, “The big thing is that judges are qualified in this class. has agreed that the plaintiff has a stand… This means that they can finally [win]” But more importantly Thomas explains that “Basically it means: [Judge Boulware] can govern in a way that will change the business practices of the UFC and the greatest thing that he can govern It is, in fact, an oppressive contract. In the judge’s opinion… A judge can decide that an MMA contract is up to two years long, right? Absolutely no promoter or non-UFC can have any contract longer than two years, Max.”
Any changes to future UFC contracts as a result of this lawsuit can prove to be plausible for a number of reasons. Not only will the UFC’s contract renewal legal sanctions weaken the promotion’s ability to maintain exclusivity in fights and other MMA activities, it will also shift the balance of heavy power in combat sports by stark to support fighters Thus, it prevents the UFC from blocking them from promoting other fights using predatory contract practices.
Thomas: ‘MMA will never be the same after this. If it continues like this’
“If we end up with a lawsuit in court where the UFC contract cannot last longer than two years. That would be a big, huge industry change,” Thomas said, drawing attention to the potential freedom of MMA competitors if the UFC contract was regulated. promoter they want Basically Their wages will increase significantly through the competition.”
If you’re wondering why “competitions” for the UFC are so rare in MMA circles, look no further than Judge Luke Boulware’s interpretation of the verdict: “The reason why. [the UFC] Still dominating just because of the contracts they hire and how they have eliminated competition by buying them out, that’s it,” Thomas explained, adding that the judges “Call them monopolies.”
For UFC and Dana White, ‘Welcome to the aftermath’
While livestreaming, Luke Thomas scrolls through John Nash’s first article above, pausing to look at old pictures of Dana White that surfaced following news of a UFC lawsuit. A fake gravestone emblazoned with the logo of a now-extinct fight promotion that the UFC should be out of business:
(Old as milk.)
apparently The photo prompted Thomas to further criticize the lawsuit. During that time, the MMA streamer recalled, “I remember when Dana White was doing really badly in 2007 or 2008 and people were saying back then, ‘It’s so fresh. It’s very different. You don’t hear CEOs in sports saying, ‘Dude, there’s a big reason they don’t do that.
“Because you will be sued. All the bragging and all the other nonsense on the front end. All of this will cost you the backend. Ladies and gentlemen are welcome in the back,” Thomas said. You are creating problems for yourself.
“Welcome to the aftermath once again. for it has begun to arrive You are watching them now.”
Luke’s final words on the story: “You may look back on August 9th, 2023 as one of the most important days in all of MMA history. So that’s it.”
Legal counsel for MMA plaintiffs regarding the lawsuit.
The law firm Joseph Saveri, LLP represents the fighters in this case. And the company’s website has a detailed description of the case. Direct links to Judge Boulware’s Aug. 9 class endorsement order and additional resources. The website explains that “[the] The plaintiffs are MMA fighters who allege that the UFC unlawfully obtained monopoly powers by diminishing the ability of other MMA promoters to compete in the marketplace for MMA promotion.”
“UFC is the largest sponsor of MMA events with approximately 90% of the market and has used its dominant position to deter unilateral claims from fighters and defend competition for the fighter’s service,” the website claims. This the UFC was therefore able to suspend compensation for fighters and impose unfavorable contract terms on fighters. keeping them on long-term contracts for the duration of their productive work.”
Co-Chief Adviser Joseph Saveri on UFC Business Operations
The firm’s partner, Joseph Saveri, is the fighter’s co-advisor in the case. And his official statement on the law firm’s website highlights the nature of the UFC’s monopoly on combat sports, especially in relation to MMA athletes and their competitors.
“The UFC’s illegal acquisitions and the use of its monopoly power to depress professional MMA fighters’ wages is unforgivable,” Saveri said. y-per-view and other national media So they can’t compete. and being liquidated or relegated to second-tier status as a de facto farm system.”
Saveri also brought similarities to other combat sports such as boxing to highlight the pathetically low percentage of promotion and event revenue allocated to UFC fighters.
“UFC pays fighters a fraction of what athletes make in a similar sport like boxing,” Saveri said. an opportunity to profit from their success.”
However, after Judge Boulware’s class endorsement order, things are looking towards fighters, companies and esports as a whole. Law firm Joseph Saveri’s website praised Boulware’s Aug. 9 ruling, saying, “This is a long-awaited but welcome outcome. Especially for our customers who have been patient through long delays.”
More about the origins of the 2014 lawsuit.
Keep an eye on the Bloody Elbow website and our Substack newsletter for more information and future updates on UFC class action lawsuits. Please see John Nash’s article above and watch the hearing for August 9th. Thanks for reading Bloody Elbow!
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