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.