Leslie Smith was supposed to fight Aspen Ladd in the final fight of her current contract with the UFC tonight at UFC Fight Night 128, but things have changed.
Ladd failed to make weight for the contest and when the UFC approached Smith to see if she was still willing to take the fight she declined.
Explaning her reasoning, Smith says she had already confirmed with the New Jersey commission that due to having successfully made weight she would be getting her show money whether she fought or not, and so the thought of having to fight without any further financial incentive didn’t appeal.
However, Smith claims that she did offer to fight on one condition, which the UFC apparently had no interest in.
“I told the UFC that I would be willing to take the fight as long as they extended my contract,” Smith told mmafighting.com. “They did not want to extend my contract. Instead, they said they would pay me my win bonus in addition to my show money and that would fulfill the fight on my contract and they would not be extending it.”
That’s a somewhat suprising move given that the 35-year-old is currently on a two-fight winning streak and has won three of her last four fights.
However, Smith has been something of a thorn in the UFC’s flesh outside of the Octagon in recent times, being one of the people most vocal about attempting to create a Fighters Union as well as being a part of an anti-trust lawsuit against the company.
“It feels like the UFC is paying me off to go away,” Smith said.