Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone appeared before the media on Nov. 30 during a press conference to announce the formation of the Mixed Martial Arts Athletes Association (MMAAA). Cerrone was introduced as an association board member along with former UFC champions Georges St-Pierre, Cain Velasquez, and TJ Dillashaw, as well as current middleweight contender Tim Kennedy.
Cerrone was questioned about his involvement with the association during Wednesday’s UFC 206 open workouts in Toronto and said that, heading into the press conference, he didn’t know he was on the board.
“As far as the Association goes, Georges and Tim called me, asked me to be part of it,” Cerrone said. “I didn’t know I was sitting on a board. That kind of took me by surprise, sitting there, like, oh, wow.”
During an appearance on the UFC Unfiltered podcast, UFC president Dana White said he was shocked that Cerrone was part of the MMAAA. Cerrone expects to meet with White this week in Toronto to discuss his involvement and grievances.
“I spoke to Dana today on the phone. He’s coming to town, and we’re going to go out to dinner and talk. There’s a lot of things I think this sport needs, retirement, pension, health care, things I think we need,” he said.
“There’s a couple people that were that I don’t plan on working with and being a part of, not mentioning any names,” Cerrone added.
“Moving forward, I’m still going to stand strong with those and say this is what I believe we need. I believe as a whole we need health care, we need some kind of pension or retirement.”
Cowboy is a loyal employee of the UFC and a friend of White’s. He didn’t discredit anything White said during his UFC Unfiltered interview and admitted that he probably should have called White before appearing at the MMAAA press conference.
“The UFC has been nothing but great to me. I can’t complain. They give me what I want. And like Dana said, I called him and he helped me out. That’s true, man. I was in a bind, he got the best lawyers you can pay, and saved my ass,” he said.
“(White) said, ‘listen kid, you can do anything you want.’ We have a good relationship, him and I, and he’s right, I probably should have called him and said, ‘hey man, I’m going to do this,’ that way you don’t just get back-handed in the face.”
(Video Courtesy of MMAFightingonSBN)