The United States District Court in Nevada has ordered former UFC heavyweight Mark Hunt to pay the promotion over $380,000 in legal fees.
Not long after his bout with former UFC heavyweight champion Brock Lesnar at UFC 200, Hunt filed a lawsuit against the UFC claiming the organization allowed the fight to happen while allegedly knowing Lesnar tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs.
The case was originally thrown out in 2019, but reopened in Sept. 2021 citing potential fraud and battery charges. Now per a report from Combat Sports Law, Hunt has been ordered to repay the UFC over $380,000 in legal fees.
“In the recent case (Hunt v. Zuffa) the UFC prevailed on several motions to dismiss and a motion for summary judgment. The UFC sought to recover legal fees from Hunt under a clause in his contract with the promotion that has potentially crushing consequences to a fighter who unsuccessfully sues the promotion. The contract notes that a ‘prevailing party’ may recover ‘its attorneys’ fees and costs’ if required to litigate disputes “arising from or related to this Agreement.”
“IT IS THEREFORE ORDERED that defendant UFC’s renewed motion for attorneys’ fees and costs [ECF No. 193] is GRANTED. Defendants are awarded $301,792.50 in attorneys’ fees and $86,442.72 in costs, for a total of $388,235.22, and the Clerk of Court is directed to ENTER JUDGMENT accordingly.”
An Interesting Challenge
Hunt took to social media to dispute the report that was initially published by BJPENN.com.
“The start of the new year and you saying I got to pay this? C’mon brow,” Hunt stated on Facebook.
Less than an hour later, Hunt returned to Facebook and challenged UFC President Dana White and the Fertitas to a fight.
“Mark the super Samoan vs Dana the parasite white Lorenzo Fertita and frank fertita
5 rounds mma these losers @danawhite frank Fertita Lorenzo Fertita has sucked the life out of so many fighters him and his scum friends -u win I drop the law suit-I win u pay every fighter u have ripped off since @ufc started now who would pay to see that.”
An Unpleasant Separation
Hunt and the UFC have been in an ongoing legal battle going back to 2017 after Hunt stepped into the Octagon to face returning former champion Brock Lesnar at UFC 200. Lesnar won the bout via unanimous decision, but the result was overturned to a no-contest by the NSAC as Lesnar tested positive for clomiphene in multiple tests in and out of competition.
Since then, Hunt has claimed that the UFC knew and intentionally hid the results of Lesnar’s test(s) to preserve his appearance at the event.
Hunt filed an RICO (racketeer influenced and corrupt organizations) lawsuit against Zuffa and the UFC, alleging conspiracy to commit a crime related to racketeering, fraud, false pretenses, breach of contract, breach of covenant of good faith and fair dealing, negligence and untrust enrichment.
Most of the charges were dismissed in 2019. A motion filed by the UFC in December 2019 cited a clause in Hunt’s contract where he, as the plaintiff, is responsible for the legal fees of the prevailing party which, in this case, is Zuffa and the UFC.
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