The absurdity of sanctioning fees
- Updated: July 9, 2015
“The WBA wanted $40,000. I have no idea for what,”
“And then there was $18,000 to the WBO. We understand that. It’s their title fight. But to pay out $58,000 in sanction fees on a $600,000 purse? Are you crazy? That’s a lot of money.”
These words are from fight manager Cameron Dunkin while discussing with ESPN, his fighter’s fight with sanctioning body World Boxing Association just prior to Jessie Vargas’ HBO televised tilt against Timothy Bradley on June 27.
The WBA reportedly asked Vargas, a Las Vegas based fighter, for $40,000 in order to defend his 140 title against 147 pound fighter Timothy Bradley in their scheduled WBO 147 pound interim title fight from the Stub Hub Center in Carson, California.
As it turns out, Vargas had vacated his WBA junior welterweight title prior to gloving up and jumping up in weight to face Bradley as a full-fledged welterweight.
(Vargas lost via decision and Bradley was later elevated to full champion as Floyd Mayweather Jr. declined options to pay a $200,000 sanctioning fee and relinquish his titles held in a higher weight class with two other prominent sanctioning bodies)
It has to be questioned, why would Vargas want to defend a WBA junior-welterweight title in a WBO welterweight title fight?
Oddly, throughout Vargas’ title reign with the WBA, fellow junior welterweight Danny Garcia was recognized as their ‘super’ champion, while Vargas was regarded as the WBA’s regular champion.
Garcia last defended the WBA ‘super’ title in March 2014, and his two fights since then have been non-title affairs.
Garcia is still listed as the WBA’s ‘super’ champion on the organizations website.
The two fighters never met in the ring to dissolve the ‘super’ and ‘regular’ champion disputes and may have been paying the same amount of sanctioning fee, with the WBA possibly doubling up on champion’s fees.
Or perhaps the ‘super’ champion gets a discount?