Longtime UFC fighter Mark Bocek is a proud Canadian who most recently competed at UFC 154. In that contest, he was dominated by Brazilian foe Rafael dos Anjos in a fight that disappointed his fans worldwide.
Unfortunately, the grappler lost more than just the fight. He also lost a check that was supposed to be delivered by a sponsor.
In hopes of not burning any bridges or drawing too much undo attention to a major company, Bocek doesn't specifically name which company stiffed him on their promised monies.
However, it appears that he didn't want the sponsors who made good on their promises to get any undeserved blame from suspicious parties. For that reason, the Canadian grappler goes out of his way to thank each sponsor except for one.
Bocek has been a member of popular MMA forum MMA Underground since 2001. In a post made on New Year's Day, Bocek turned to the web community and talked about being stiffed by one of his sponsors from UFC 154:
Hi guys, first I would like to thank you all for the support, it is very frustrating as a fighter who basically depends on their sponsors' money, to not be paid. I would like to clarify that I did not post this with the intention of tarnishing anyone's reputation, I was just expressing my frustration, and I can guarantee that I'm not alone out there.
Please be aware that Venum fight gear is the best company out there, they really take care of all their fighters, they supply me with plenty of great quality gear, they always have my back, and I never had to worry about payment. Also fight decals is owned by a friend of mine and he does the best banners ever and their print work is always impeccable, I have only good things to say about them.
Major's Pharmacy has been a part of my sponsorship team since my first UFC fight. Major's Pharmacy is like a family and they support me even when I have no fights scheduled. Major's Pharmacy is a dream sponsor for any fighter out there. As far as Fear the Fighter which is owned by the brother of a trainer partner you guys know they will always deliver. I am grateful for all my other sponsors that includes Life Pulp, Dr. Paul Biondich, Kleinburg Private Wealth, Tri-Star, Level IIX, WR and all the past sponsors that always had honored their deal. I don't see the need to mention the name of the sponsor that has not paid all the money owed to me.
Thanks for all the support guys...
It's doubtful that anyone memorized the list of sponsors who were on Bocek's fight trunks from UFC 154. Therefore, it looked as if the sponsor who ducked out the back door might get away clean. However, due to a little bit of internet detective work, fingers are being pointed in one direction.
The sponsor logo in the bottom left corner of the photo belongs to none other than TapouT Training Center in Burlington, Ontario. As the only sponsor not specifically mentioned, it certainly appears that they are the culprit in this case.
Please keep in mind that Bocek never specifically fingered TapouT as the sponsor who double crossed him, and that the evidence here is simply speculative.
What do you think? Does a company like TapouT, who has a stellar reputation of supporting fighters, seem like they would stiff a fighter on a check that was earned nearly three months ago?