Anyone who has represented a professional fighter for any sustained period of time is intimately familiar with this inquiry. While the question may not have been actually expressed by the client, it has certainly been implied. Warranted? Possibly. Justified? Maybe. Fair? Given the proper context, certainly.
You see, fighters aren’t concerned with the dollars you’ve grossed them in the past, the endorsements you’ve previously secured or the appearance fees you’ve generated. Rather, and justifiably so, they are concerned with the NOW, THIS FIGHT, TODAY. This way of thinking isn’t foreign, nor should it be considered abnormal given the world in which they compete. There is no 401K in fighting, no retirement fund, absent one they independently establish, and there is not even a promise of another day. Today is all they have. Their next fight is not even a guarantee, meaning their next pay-check is a contingency, dependent upon multiple other contingencies, in a sport full of contingencies. Seems warranted that they would want to know what you are doing NOW? For THIS FIGHT? TODAY?
Consider for a moment the perspective of the fighter. They reside in a world where the fans and media are all quick to raise, praise, scrutinize and vilify. Here today, gone tomorrow. Lose a fight and the fans and media begin to question legacy, commitment, talent and even heart. The fighter is judged in this context, and in turn, they judge others in their professional life in much the same way. This does not mean, however, that you, as the representative, are not appreciated; rather, it simply means that you too are held to the same standard by which the fighters themselves are judged. If today was all you had wouldn’t you want to make the most of it? If today was the only day you were guaranteed to get paid for what it was that you loved doing most, wouldn’t you want to maximize your pay? If your earnings were tied to the efforts of another, or better yet, contingent upon the efforts of another, wouldn’t you want their best? Wouldn’t you want to know what they were doing NOW? For THIS FIGHT? TODAY?
If a fighter loses, the media, promoter, sponsors and fans may lose interest, which means support, financial and otherwise, can be lost. The fighter’s natural response, judged in this context, is to respond and react in kind. A fighter risks injury every day of training and risks being “cut” every time they compete. That means during the course of what is absolutely required of them to earn a living, they run the risk of no longer being capable of earning that living. As a result, they demand the best of themselves, and in turn expect the best out of those around them, including their representation. They literally cannot afford to lose and they certainly cannot afford for you not to perform. They need you to perform NOW, THIS FIGHT, TODAY.
Your ability as a fighter representative is one of the many contingencies in their lives. You are not paid to be their friend, their buddy or their enabler. You are paid to produce. Their financial stability is contingent, on some level, on your abilities, capabilities, and the results you are able to achieve, not merely what you’ve achieved. Athlete representation is serious business and involves serious responsibility, encompassing daily effort and maximum commitment. You cannot half-ass your way around in this industry. Fighters not only need quality representation, they deserve it. Importantly, they deserve production NOW, for THIS FIGHT, TODAY.
Today is all they have, and as a result, today is all you have. Seems fair to me.
About Rob Cardenas, Esq.
Licensed since 2000, Rob Cardenas, Esq., is a Litigation Attorney with the Law Firm of Benson, Bertoldo, Baker & Carter (www.BensonLawyers.com) in Las Vegas, Nevada. Rob also previously served as the long-time business manager of Wanderlei Silva, and has negotiated promotional, endorsement and appearance deals for some of the biggest names in MMA.
Rob also owns and operates MMAppearances.com (www.MMAppearances.com), the premiere booking agency in the world of MMA, focusing exclusively on securing MMA fighter appearances.
Ever thought of booking an MMA celebrity to make an appearance at your event? If so, there are a several key issues to keep in mind.
1. Make sure you have a realistic time frame, as most top-level fighters are either booked well in advance, or alternatively, may be limited due to their fight schedule. You want to plan ahead to avoid disappointment.
2. Do you have the budget to obtain the fighter you want? If not, you will need to have flexibility. Alternatively, you may wish to solicit a sponsor to offset the cost. However, you must ensure that the fighter doesn’t have any competing contractual relationships that would be impacted by the involvement of the potential sponsor.
3. Make sure you are clear about what it is you want from the fighter. Will they be hosting the event, signing autographs, or simply appearing at your venue?
4. Have a couple of options for different MMA celebrities, in case the one you want is not available or simply out of your budget.
5. Do not sign a contract without taking the necessary time to carefully review and comprehend the agreement. Unless you are utilizing a reputable booking agent, you will most likely be dealing with the fighter’s agent or manager in the booking process and they can, at times, be a little difficult to deal with. Be fair, but don’t extend beyond your budget and never make promises you cannot keep.
Keep in mind that the higher profile the MMA celebrity, the more they will likely demand, but do not be afraid to negotiate.
Booking an MMA celebrity can be an intimidating process. As an alternative to proceeding on your own, you may wish to consider MMAppearances.com, the premiere booking agency in the world of MMA, focusing exclusively on securing MMA fighter appearances.
MMAppearances.com, a full service booking agency focused exclusively on securing top rated Mixed Martial Arts fighter appearances, announces the launch of its new website, www.MMAppearances.com designed and developed by the creative minds at Form86. MMAppearances.com specializes in booking MMA fighters for corporate events, MMA seminars, UFC Viewing Parties, Meet-n-Greets, trade shows and conventions, and any other creative company program.
MMAAppearances.com is committed to becoming the premiere booking agency in the world of mixed martial arts. Through creativity and innovation, MMAppearances.com has negotiated and secured fighter appearances and seminars for some of the top names in world of MMA and prides itself on establishing and maintaining strong relationships both inside and outside the industry. MMAppearances.com boasts an incredible roster of top-level fighters and an established system of networking which enables the agency to secure world-wide opportunities.
According to Rob Cardenas, President of MMAppearances.com, “We truly value our relationship with each client, and work in an efficient, professional and stream-lined fashion to secure talent specific to the needs and budget of each event. Our goal isn’t to just book an appearance; rather, we strive to provide an unbelievable experience for everyone involved with an eye towards securing long-term relationships.”
For more information on how to secure a fighter for your next event, please fill out the form HERE.
MMAppearances.com, a leading booking agency for Mixed Martial Arts fighters, has secured Hughes Marketing Solutions to do both their marketing and Brand Ambassador/Fighter relations programming. Hughes Marketing Solutions is a Texas based Marketing, Advertising, Public Relations, and Sponsorship firm. “Our partnership with MMAppearances.com will allow us to dive into the exciting world of mixed martial arts and use that energy to create awareness and strengthen their image,” says Jessica Hughes, President of Hughes Marketing Solutions.
MMAppearances.com specializes in booking appearances for your next big corporate event, speaking engagement, celebrity and athlete appearances, tradeshows, seminars, and many other vehicles of promotion. Their one-step access to current MMA fighters and personalities makes the booking process fast and easy. “Through our extensive industry relationships with MMA fighters and experience negotiating hundreds of fighter talent deals, we help simplify the process of booking a fighter into an easy, efficient and effective way. Our goal is always to make the booking as professional, stress-less, and successful as you pictured it” said Robert Cardenas, President of MMAppearances.com. Cardenas has represented many fighters, including the international icon, Wanderlei Silva.
To make booking the fighters easier and more effective for the client, MMA Appearances relies on their understanding of the world of Martial Arts and their long-term relationships they have developed within the industry over the years. With MMAppearances.com’s innovative booking process, and Hughes Marketing Solutions’ knowledge of the field and successful, strategic marketing campaigns there can only be a positive outcome.
For more information contact Jessica Hughes at