Nate Diaz was making 20k/20k on his UFC Contract Going into His 21st Fight

Former UFC star Nate Diaz remained on a $20,000/$20,000 contract nearly a decade into his tenure with the organization.

According to Anton Tabuena of Bloody Elbow, multiple previously undisclosed payouts were made to Nate Diaz. This was made public as part of released records pertaining to the UFC’s $1.6 billion class action lawsuit.

During his UFC on FOX 13 bout against former lightweight world champion Rafael dos Anjos, Diaz’s disclosed payout stood at $16,000. Additionally, an undisclosed payment of $40,000 was associated with the same match. This brought his total earnings to $56,000.

In his preceding bout, Diaz earned between $125,000 and $180,000 for his victory over Gray Maynard. At that time, only $80,000 was disclosed. This consisted of a $15,000 purse, a $15,000 win bonus, and a $50,000 performance bonus.

Moreover, it was uncovered that Diaz had a Letter of Agreement (LOA) with the UFC. This guaranteed him an extra $40,000 not disclosed to athletic commissions or the public.

Following his 21st UFC match against Michael Johnson at UFC on FOX 17, Diaz encountered back-to-back clashes with Conor McGregor. This earned him seven figures for the first time in his combat sports career.

His first meeting with McGregor at UFC 196 reportedly earned Diaz $2.8 million. The subsequent bout at UFC 202 yielded $4.3 million, with only half of this sum being disclosed.

The report also highlights substantial payouts to other UFC combatants. Chael Sonnen received over $1 million for his second bout against Anderson Silva and his light heavyweight title bout with Jon Jones.

Holly Holm pocketed $1.1 million for her knockout of Ronda Rousey at UFC 293 and nearly $3 million for her bantamweight title match with Miesha Tate.

The report’s findings illustrate a stark contrast in compensation distribution. The top 20% of the highest-paid UFC combatants received 76.2% of the total compensation, while the remaining 80% received a mere 23.8% between 2011 and 2016.

In 2011, the lowest disclosed payout during a five-year period was a mere $4,000 for an unnamed competitor on their third UFC bout. That same year, three debutants received $6,000, while 21 others were paid $9,000 upon their UFC debut.

Fast forward to 2023, the most common minimum purse for debutants stands at $10,000. The latest DWCS season saw the UFC signing 45 combatants out of 49 bouts, reflecting the organization’s ongoing commitment to nurturing fresh talent.

Despite the passing years, the compensation landscape for UFC debutants remains relatively static. Upon signing, many debutants find themselves on a 12×12 contract. This guarantees $12,000 for showing up and doubling to $24,000 with a win.