The fight game's an unforgiving sport, just ask Conor McGregor about the memes that cropped up after his definitive loss to Khabib Nurmagomedov. While there are tons of fighters out there who claim to be "the baddest" or "the best," very rarely do people live up to that hype or persona that they portray to the world.
Nate Diaz and Jorge Masvidal do, which is probably why a special "BMF" belt was made for their UFC 244 bout, which earned both the organization, and the fighters, a lot of money. But just how much did they make?
After Nate Diaz had an amazing showing against former UFC Lightweight Champion and perennial threat Anthony "Showtime" Pettis, he floated the idea of fighting Jorge Masvidal for the honor of earning the title of "Baddest Motherf---ker." Masvidal, who was in attendance after delivering the fastest KO in UFC history against former Olympic wrestler and Bellator/One FC welterweight champ, Ben Askren, smiled and nodded, seemingly excited about this idea.
Dana White called Jorge Masvidal "fighter of the year" for 2019.
Jorge recently scored a stunning KO victory against Darren Till, who is so big he now competes at Middleweight and formerly fought for the belt against Tyron Woodley. Then that flying knee knockout of Ben Askren pretty much cemented him as the most talked about welterweight fighter on the UFC roster. That, coupled with his "no BS" attitude, love for knocking out his opponents, and disdain for boring, "lay and pray" pugilists, instantly made him a fan favorite.
His bout with Ben included a lot of trash talk, most of it from Ben himself. Many UFC fans weren't keen on Askren after he won what felt like a questionable stoppage victory against Robbie Lawler. Ben's dismissive and cocky attitude has made him a lot of enemies in the MMA community, so people were tickled pink when they discovered that Jorge was planning on opening the fight with the flying knee that he drilled over and over again. And it worked, only five seconds into the fight.
The BMF Title Belt.
The fight between Jorge and Nate is something that sounds like a couple of middle school kids came up with, and it's undeniably awesome. The UFC actually made it official by creating a 1 of 1 BMF belt and then Jorge suggested that the Rock be the one to put it on the winner, and The People's Champion, Dwayne Johnson, actually came to Madison Square Garden to make it happen. The snowball effect of this idea two fighters had, who were fan favorites, that turned a card into a special event was truly magical.
How much did Jorge Masvidal make at UFC 244 and what's his net worth?
UFC fighter salaries have often included extra bonuses from the organization, including PPV number points and a slew of other bonuses. The reported fight purses for both Jorge and Nate were $500,000 a piece. While it's a huge chunk of change, it's nothing compared to what some high-level professional boxers make for their fights.
It's important to note that these purses don't include any possible pay-per-view points, or the Reebok sponsorship bonuses for the fighters, which doesn't offer that much money per bout, and is structured based on a fighter's ranking/popularity. Masvidal's current net worth is unknown, but it's reported to be around $1 million after his fight with Diaz, but it's probably higher than that.
Often, the UFC will award performance bonuses to fighters for best knockout, best fight, best submission, etc., but Nate and Jorge, despite giving a barnburner of a fight, didn't receive any performance-related bonuses.
UFC 244 Doctor Stoppage controversy.
Jorge kept rocking Nate Diaz with left hooks and punches throughout their fight that caused some serious bleeding above the Stockton slugger's right eye. The wound only grew during the fight and another cut formed beneath his eye. While the cut-men were able to keep his face intact for most of the fight, at the end of the 3rd round, a doctor came in to check Nate's face.
He waved off the fight and stopped it from going forward in order to protect Nate's eye from being seriously damaged. Fans, including UFC President Dana White, were p----d off, not to mention Nate Diaz himself who is one of the most durable fighters in the sport. However, after seeing the shape that Nate's eye was in afterwards, many people reversed their opinion, and agreed that it was the right call.
Although Jorge is blowing up in popularity now, longtime MMA fighters who are familiar with his bouts know that he's one of the toughest competitors out there. He went five rounds with Nate's older brother and MMA standout Gilbert Melendez under the Strikeforce banner and came up short, but ever since he dedicated himself to "ending" fights, he's become a household name.
Of course the question on everyone's mind is when Jorge's next fight will be. He's floated the idea of fighting Saul "Canelo" Alvarez in a boxing match in his post-fight presser, but for now, he's going to heal up some hand injuries and come back to fight in 2020.
That is, unless, the UFC wants him to fight either Colby Covington or Kamaru Usman as an alternate. According to Jorge though, that'll cost the organization a lot of money. And I can't blame the guy for demanding a lot of green. He's currently the hottest star in MMA right now and he's got some exciting fights to prove it.