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Thread: Cage Contender/ John Ferguson not paying Fighters & Staff

  1. #11
    THEE Mark Connor markjitsu's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    glasgow, scotland


    The sad/funny part of this is that 2 years ago I made a similar thread on here - I was never paid purse or flights ( all in the contract), and what I got was a load of people coming on the thread saying "oh I'm sure it's just a mistake, and , he's such a gentleman"/general support for the thief/conman.
    Ukmma reaps what it sows...

  2. #12


    I remember that Mark, did you ever get paid in the end. I'd have gone through small claims if you had/have the contract

  3. #13


    Judging by the number of views on this it's quite obvious that most people in the community are interested by this and rightly so. Whether you've been directly the victim of this or know someone who it's happened to, it's important that we're all made aware of these situations.

    Thanks largely to the legitimacy and good word of 99% of the promoters that I've worked with, and the subtle persuasiveness of Mr Andy Sledge for the other 1%, I've never been put in a situation where I've not been paid for a show but I know people who have.

    It's terrible and it shouldn't happen.

    Major props to Chris for stepping up.
    16-bit for life

  4. #14


    My fighter John Redmond is still waiting on his money and has been told several times its on the way, most recent I was told it would be today or next Day which is Monday.

    Not optimistic but fingers crossed for my lad who put 8 weeks training in for the privilege of selling over a grand worth of tickets.

    John has told me this it's due to errors and if it is then his staff need to be sacked and replaced, some Dublin clubs have had money transferred even though the reason my Fighter has not been paid is They couldn't transfer money to Dublin

    Even if money comes through on Monday a lot of damage has been done to the promoter and I suspect his support will rapidly dwindle after this sorry episode.

  5. #15

    Default Re

    Have to say in 5 years of competing and in 8 years of refereeing MMA I have never not been paid on the night. On this occasion I received a cheque which could only be drawn in the uk even though it was a euro cheque. It was also post dated a week after the event so I couldn't even lodge it for a week regardless. Now people experience cash flow problems and if there is honesty and sincerity in dealing with people then I am sure understanding and patience will be forthcoming. This is almost 6 weeks later and there is still no sign of payment.
    It appears I am not alone in this as Chris has posted.

    I'm retired as of the last Battlezone in March, I no longer feel comfortable refereeing the sport of MMA in Ireland. Earlier today I was asked an opinion of whether I along with others with a similar poor experience would support future cage contender shows. I had a small rant at the current state of Irish MMA. See an excerpt below.

    ......If I get paid it has no bearing on my support or lack of for CC, I'm retired and the last couple of months have made me glad of that decision. People say one thing then do another,support you with an idea to your face then you find they are working behind the scenes in the exact opposite direction. Irish MMA needs to take a long hard look at itself and people are going to have to make decisions to further the sport or further their own pockets. I would put a blanket ban on any new shows in the next 18 months-2 years. Consolidate what already exists by weeding out the cowboys , the corner cutters, those who matchmake poorly, those who put on fights with inexperienced fighters, those who have inadequate medical and official cover, those who expect fighters for their show but won't supply other shows etc etc. Everyone knows what needs to be done, just there are so many fingers in so many pies its a corrupt system at present. Conor McGregor fights tonight in the UFC, on merit, by knocking people out, not from connection as as happened in past. Norman parke fights at the end of the month again on merit. If you all want that to be the start of deserved Irish participation in the biggest of the big shows then stop all the bullshit and clean your house. End of rant

    Enough said on the subject, fair play to Chris for highlighting the issue, if you didn't see it, Chris and Greg loughran fought the fight of the night that night worthy of any show.

  6. #16


    Irish MMA only has the same failings as UKMMA and a lot of European MMA.
    Andy Lillis, Former Cagewarriors President

  7. #17


    This has been brought to my attention from a fellow poster, Paddy has given me permission to post this as he does not have account but would like to share his story -

    Paddy Kelly said - John sorry to hear you have not been paid. Mr Ferguson has a lot to answer. He asked me on the Friday night before the show to pay loft sound via bank transfer and he would settle with me after the show. I paid 4,600 to them as John said the show would not go ahead, on top of this he still owes me for running the show for him. To date I have received 1,848 from Ticket group John said they would be paying me the full amount. Apparently Cage Contender will be going ahead in May. John has text me today to say his cheque still hasn't cleared although he paid it in on 27/03/13, cheques should only take 5 days max he has been feeding me bullshit for the last 6 weeks.
    I suggest that if it is the case there are others like us then we join together to get what we are owed as Mr Ferguson is living of our hard work. He is a coward.

    I have spoke to Paddy since posting & has said that John has promised him the money & will sell his van if he has to in order to raise the funds.

  8. #18
    " The Dictator " Irish's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Ireland & London


    This is of no surprise I have now spoken to over 10 people who are owed money just from the last show never mind the 20+ people owed money over the past 2 years, (including me) yet when I tried to out him 18 months ago everyone ganged up and said what a nice man he was and I was the big bad wolf. yeah what a gent.

    I just spoke with Paddy Kelly the guy who ran the past 8 shows for him and I feel sorry for the guy getting stung like he did with the lies told, he will be on here shortly to tell his story.

    You can keep up with all the people coming out of the wood work on at this point anyone who is owed money or has been caught out should be speaking up and not acting like a coward. I know a few more who are owed money and haven't man'ed up yet.
    Actions speak louder then words....#No23

  9. #19


    Quote Originally Posted by TheDictator View Post
    I know a few more who are owed money and haven't man'ed up yet.
    Agree 100%
    People are not speaking out as they think it may harm them!
    Shows can't exist without Fighters and shows that don't pay Fighters should quite simply not be dealt with, and even clubs that are not affected should look at it this way, I cant see this been resolved, even if money is paid out in reality compensation and new policies need to be put in place as who is going to trust Cage contender in future without upfront payments. I'll update here when or if my Fighter is paid his dues.

  10. #20


    Statement from Barry Oglesby (CC commentator) via

    As of this afternoon, I’ve informed John Ferguson of Ferguson Sports/Cage Contender that I will not be available to work on the next Cage Contender show. I have taken this decision after recent revelations regarding the financial dealings involved with Cage Contender 16, and subsequent information regarding the treatment of fighters from previous shows.

    As a coach and former fighter, many of these people are my colleagues and friends, and I cannot in good conscience continue to support a brand that has treated them so poorly.

    I don’t know the ins and outs of the situation. John claims it is mismanagement that has led to this situation, his detractors claim it is unscrupulousness. Either way, the result is the same.

    John gave me a chance to appear on television as a part of the commentary team with my friend Stuart McQuitty, and I have enjoyed every minute of the experience. Cage Contender has upped the stakes for Irish MMA, and has given Irish fighters a huge TV platform to display their skills. Some massive names have come to Irish shores to fight, giving Irish fans the opportunity to see notables such as Paul Daley, Ivan Sallaverry, and Dean Lister fight live. I genuinely hope that the brand can survive this recent crisis, and continue to put on shows in the future. However I stand against poor treatment of fighters who give of their time for so little return.

    I was disappointed to be outed publicly as someone to whom Cage Contender was in debt, and I would have preferred to have dealt with this entire matter privately.I don’t like having my financial affairs in public, however it seems like the exposure of this incident, while messy, has served to bring other information to light. I’ve decided to state my position for what its worth.
    Fighting, writing and mood lighting.

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