NFL commissioner Roger Goodell receives $31.7 million per year. The amount may seem exorbitant for some but for UFC head Dana White, Goodell’s compensation is too small given the kind of job that he has.
In an interview with TMZ about football’s latest controversy that involved a cheerleader kneeling during the national anthem, White said that he is super stoked not to be in the shoes of the NFL commissioner, who White said has the worst job in the industry.
“Worst job in sports,” Dana said. “They’re not paying that guy enough money.”
The latest of NFL’s controversies happened on Thursday when a San Francisco 49ers cheerleader kneeled during the United States national anthem ahead of an NFL game.
Kneeling during the national anthem has become a form of protest among some NFL players ever since Colin Kaepernick started the movement as a form of protest against police brutality and racial injustice two seasons ago.
In May, Goodell introduced a policy requiring players to stand during the anthem but provided them with an option to remain in the locker room during the pregame performance if they want to do so. The policy would ultimately fine teams for players who chose to kneel or sit during the anthem.
The NFL, however, decided to put the policy on hold for the 2018 season, allowing for further discussions of the issue, according to ESPN.
The incident on Thursday is believed to be the first national anthem protest by a cheerleader.
Amid the controversies that the NFL faces, from Kaepernick, to President Donald Trump, who has become a regular critic of NFL players demonstrating during the national anthem, and now to the protesting of the cheerleader, White seems grateful that the issue will not go down in the UFC.
When asked how he would handle if this happened in his league, Dana said that it wouldn’t.
“We don’t do the national anthem,” he said. “They can kneel all they want.”
Dana said that he wished NFL players would find another way to protest, but nonetheless said that anyone can do whatever he or she wants because this is a free country.
The NFL extended Goodell’s contract for another five years late last year. He was previously paid around $30 million a year, including bonuses.
The New York Times reported in December that Goodell’s new deal pays roughly the same amount but unlike his previous arrangement, nearly 90 percent of his potential compensation will only be paid if certain performance targets are met.