Former UFC lightweight champion Anthony Pettis believes fighters should be testing free agency more often.
Currently, free agency in MMA is not as big as in the other main sports. Oftentimes, fighters will re-sign with the promotion they are in before their last fight. However, for Pettis, he doesn’t think that is smart.
Anthony Pettis On MMA Free Agency
“It’s weird. I think the fame that comes with fighting in the UFC, these fighters are addicted to that. They want that more than the guarantee,” Pettis said on The MMA Hour. “They’re like, ‘I’m willing to risk not getting paid a certain amount to get the fame that comes with it and the recognition that comes with fighting on a UFC fight card.'”
“The general public looks at the UFC like it’s the best place to fight, it’s the only place to fight. But as fighters, you’re supposed to take care of yourself. Most guys don’t get to fight as long as I got to fight. So I got to see all the phases of the MMA chain, from when the UFC got bought out to the WME, how those changes happened. So I think fighters should definitely test the market. And there’s so many more organizations coming out now that are paying good guys. Eagle FC, Khabib’s show, they’re paying guys good money.”
Anthony Pettis gets his shot at redemption against Stevie Ray tomorrow night! #PFLPlayoffs pic.twitter.com/tZK4tqvlhD
— PFL (@PFLMMA) August 4, 2022
A Shock at First, the PFL is Treating Anthony Pettis Well
Pettis is one of those fighters that tested the market, signing a lucrative contract with the PFL after fighting out his UFC contract. The news came as a surprise given Pettis was a big name and a former champion, and fighters like that weren’t leaving the UFC. Still, he decided to test the waters and got the deal he was looking for.
Pettis is set to face Stevie Ray in the main event of PFL 7 this Friday night in the semifinals of the lightweight tournament. The event will be broadcast on ESPN and ESPN+ at 6 p.m. EST / 3 p.m. PST from the Hulu Theater at Madison Square Garden in New York