CM Punk thinks fighters need to unionize.
He made these comments in a wide-ranging appearance with his former WWE Backstage colleague Renee Paquette on her podcast Oral Sessions. He first touched on aspects of fighter pay that may not be publicly known.
"...There’s a lot of locker room money that people don’t know about and he gets a lot of flak for [not paying fighters enough]," Punk commented (h/t The Body Lock). "That being said, I do also think fighters need to get paid a whole hell of a lot more."
“But a lot of that time when he lashes out when people are complaining about pay and unionization, it’s because he knows, ‘hey, I just gave that guy $250,000 under the table’ but you can’t talk about it. But he should still pay people more and fighters need to get together and unionize anyway."
Locker room bonuses have long been part of the UFC's rumored business practices, although they were more commonly associated with the previous Fertitta ownership group. MMA has seen many attempted changes to the labor status quo in recent years, including the active class-action lawsuit, as well as Leslie Smith's Project Spearhead.