The UFC’s Biggest Bout Yet: Its Fighters’ Antitrust LawsuitMay 24, 2017
There currently is an antitrust litigation that is enveloping the mixed martial arts (MMA) world. Six current and former MMA fighters have filed a class action lawsuit against the company that owns the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), Zuffa, LLC, for violations of the Sherman Act. [Cung Le, et al. v. Zuffa, LLC, d/b/a Ultimate Fighting Championship and UFC, Case No. 5:14-cv-05484, U.S. Dist. Ct. N.D. of California.] A review of the docket indicates that the UFC will have to go a few more rounds before it has another opportunity for a knockout.
The putative class plaintiffs allege that the UFC has monopoly or monopsony power in two markets: (1) the market for promotion of live MMA bouts, and (2) the market for professional MMA fighting services. The plaintiffs claim that the UFC receives 90 percent of the revenues from MMA bout promotion and that MMA fighters do not have the ability to work for MMA promoters other than the UFC.
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