Ford to Aggression? MFC’s Pavelich Responds


photo by Jason Bouwmeester|

Amidst talk that Ryan Ford will leave the Maximum Fighting Championship organization and sign up at Aggression MMA, Mark Pavelich has chosen to release the following statement:

Over the past several weeks, it came to my attention that Ryan Ford, a fighter under contract to the Maximum Fighting Championship and Pavelich Sports Inc., was dissatisfied with his contract and wished to leave my organization.

Through repeated conversations between myself, his agent Steve Gavin, and our respective lawyers, Mr. Ford was left with three options:

1) Complete his contract which has two fights remaining
2) Do not compete and let his contract run out at the end of September 2011
3) Buy out his contract or have another organization buy it out for him

The Maximum Fighting Championship and its legal representation have received no letters, emails, phone calls or communication of any kind in any attempt to solve this matter.

The Maximum Fighting Championship received information on Jan. 20, 2011 that Mr. Ford’s agent had sent out text messages alleging that Mr. Ford is being discriminated against racially.

For Mr. Ford and Mr. Gavin to allegedly claim racism is completely baseless, preposterous and nothing more than an attempt to induce his way out of a legal contract. He was brought back into the MFC’s employ in all good faith, and any claim of discrimination or racism is clear defamation and slander. The MFC has a great deal of cultural diversity amongst its fighters including African-Americans, Native Americans (First Nations), Asians, and South Americans.

Mr. Ford’s mixed martial arts career was started in the MFC when my organization gave him a chance to put his life back together following a troubling time that included incarceration. He previously left the MFC over a contract dispute and then returned by signing a new four-fight deal in 2010. Mr. Ford was offered three different opponents for a fight on the MFC 28 card and his management turned down all of them.

As part of his contract, there is an arbitration clause that can be utilized, so if Mr. Ford wants to go in that direction to find a buy-out price we will oblige. However, he will NOT be allowed to just walk away from his contract for free.

Pat Reid of the Edmonton Combative Sports Commission was notified recently that Mr. Ford remains under contract with the MFC and that he should not be allowed to participate as an MMA fighter in any other promotion until the matter is resolved.

The MFC has stood beside Ryan Ford through many difficult times, and as a matter of record I was the only person to stand up and speak for him at a probation hearing. Ryan left the MFC before and even after the animosity of that departure, matters were patched up and he came back in 2010. The MFC gave him a second chance to come back to our organization. For unexplained reasons he does not want to be part of our organization.

I look forward to resolving this issue via arbitration in a fair and timely fashion.

Mark Pavelich, Owner/President
Maximum Fighting Championship

Based on this statement from the MFC, it appears that Ford will leave the MFC despite having two more fights on a contract that expires in September of 2011.  The statement also mentions that Ford will attempt to get out of his contract by using racism as an out.

According to Scott Zerr, MFC’s Director of Media and Fighter Relations, Ford was offered numerous fights for the MFC 28 card.  Zerr states, “Mr. Ford was offered several fights for MFC 28 and his management turned down all of them.”

It appears that the Edmonton Commission will not come between the two fighters. Pat Reid, Executive Director of the ECSC, states that “the ECSC does not get involved with contract disputes between promoters and fighters.  Their “for service” contracts are between the two parties.”

Harvey Panesar, President of Aggression MMA, would not comment for the story, however Aggression will be holding a press conference this afternoon.  Look for further news on this topic, including comments from Ryan Ford, on Top MMA News from the conference later today.  Ford has had contract issues with the MFC before and one hopes Ford does not throw out wild and wreckless claims of racial discrimination just to break a contract.  Although this site has many names it could call Mr. Pavelich, being a racist is not one of them.

18 Responses to “ Ford to Aggression? MFC’s Pavelich Responds ”

  1. Duffy Young says:

    Ford has no respect for anyone or any organization.

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  2. trent_thorne says:

    no surprise there! Seems everything Pavelich is involved with turns to shit! The guy has no buisness being in this buisness! Even calling fighters after they lost “peices of shit” and i am sure that im not the only person aware of this guys indescresions. good ridance!!!

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  3. Duffy Young says:

    Do you notice that pavolich never has problems with other fighters when it comes to contracts just ford. Has anyone checked into fords past you can google it, very shaddy dude.

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  4. Pavelduche says:

    Hi Scott!

    Looks like you will be busy working on negative press releases in the coming weeks insulting Ryan and his family.

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  5. Darby Soop says:

    Hey Duffy, maybe you should shut your mouth cause you know nothing of Ford…. MFC treats their fighters like shit

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  6. fanfighter07 says:

    Mr Zerr if you carry on with the remarks that you are saying I think you need to be careful that SLANDER does’t come your way!!!!!

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  7. terryrobertson says:

    i love mma but the drama and politics is too much! Unless your name is ford or pavelich it’s best just to let them do their thing. This site is like a big highschool with days of our lives on loop over the p.a.

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  8. Gunner says:

    I won’t and wiLl never get involved with trying to figure out another fighters career direction or relationship with promotors, but I do find it funny when I see so many “unrelated” people who know nothing about what goes on between a fighter and a promotor other than what they read on forums.

    My insite would be Mark and Ryan just do not have the final destination in mind or one of them just does not feel that they can live up to there end of the bargain. YES u can make ur assumption who u think may be at fault but in the end only the one who is wanting the contract relationship to end will know the real reason.

    I for one will say this Mark from day one told me in a straight up manner what he expected and thought, whether I liked it or not I had my choice to live with it, resent it, agree with it or to walk away totally.

    I was given two great oppertunities with MFC both I blew but even after losing two bad knockouts I was still given an oppertunity to fight my final fight of 3 before my contract expired which I had to decline due to injury. So I cannot see Mark sidelining a HUGE local draw like Ryan purposly.

    In a nut shell, make your judgements but some scenarios are pretty clear exspecially when a scenario repeats itself.

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  9. Ron Anderson says:

    Gunner I agree with what you are saying. Ford is not good enough to be in the MFC anymore. Aggression is the pefect place for him, he can pick his fights and you can’t do that in the MFC.Ford shines in the smaller shows not in the MFC.

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  10. Great post Gunner (call me tomorrow too ya doucher). Anyways, I wanted to hopefully clear up some misconceptions that I feel get thrown around a lot regarding contract disputes with the MFC. Let me preface this with saying that I’m friends with both Mark Pavelich and Ryan Ford and in fact was an instrumental key behind the scenes in getting them talking again when Ryan re-signed with them.

    I believe my comments to be qualified as an Agent in this industry, I’ve probably dealt with MFC more than anyone out there. With that being said, I’ve also done a lot of business with many promotions across Canada and therefore not “biased” or only loyal to one organization. Bottom line is that I do have a great relationship with the MFC because my agency does the majority of our business with them.

    I’m not sure what the confusion with contracts are. My agency deals with contract all day, every day. And just to give you an idea of the list of fighters we’ve had under contract with the MFC, here are some that come to mind at the moment:

    Antonio McKee (LW Champion) – Jason High – David Heath – Bryan Baker – Jesse Juarez – Emmanuel Newton – Nathan Gunn – Jared Kilkenny – Alain Hernandez – Chase Gormley – David Letourneau

    Some of these fighters were one fight deals, other ones were multi-fight deals. I have never had contract disputes with any promoter and that’s including other Edmonton based promoters. Why? Because they’re pretty easy to understand with the proper representation. That’s where a good manager comes in handy. We have legal representation that knows exactly what we sign off on and what we get ourselves into. So there can be no room for error or misunderstandings.

    I have dealt with Mark in every aspect of a contract as well. I have had releases, buy outs, re-negotiations and championship clauses. There are no surprises, escape clauses or bullshit loopholes that can be scammed on someone if they have a good lawyer look it over.

    Either way, I don’t know exactly what the situation is nor do I care to weigh in on it specifically. All I know is that it sounds like both parties have had it with each other and quite frankly are probably better off going their separate ways regardless.

    Like a bad relationship or marriage…sometimes it’s just ok to admit you’ve had a good run, tried your best to make things work…but in the end you know you’re better off apart. My opinion on relationships may differ from others though…but i truly believe you should exit a relationship as gracefully as you entered it. With the best of intentions in mind.

    Best of luck to both parties…

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  11. kev says:

    Ryan Ford is a douche bag, period. He signs contracts and cannot commit. contracts work both ways, and im sure other organizations should recognize this, and recognize that this guy is a pest. If you have an obligation you should stick with it, or you lose credibility. This crybaby always has an excuse.
    I guess the competition in the MFC is too much for him after getting his ass handed to him twice by pat healy, and then dougy lima.

    He used to be one of my favorite up and comers, but I have no time for fools like this who goes out and disrespect every organization he signs with. Hopefully the UFC will recognize this and leave him for the minor leagues.

    You lose more fans everyday Ryan Ford. You Douche bag!!

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  12. sam says:

    its kind of funny how when the TFC had to drop that show he said they were “bush league” now he signs with the company that they just merged with, goodshow.

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  13. JOE says:


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  14. ruckus780 says:

    first off Ryan was happy with tfc in the cage they wanted him to sit out months and months before they got a show together because they were not running there org right that was not his problem nor fault,,,,As far as Ford getting his handed to him by healy twice and lima,,,,ford dominated healy there first fight for 3 rounds before making a rookie mistake,,,his second fight was a razor thin spit dec that I believe he won,,,,The fight with Lima he won the first round and wouldve knocked him out if his head was in the game and did things he was supposed to such as following his game plan, Instead of focusing on selling tickets that pavalich sports should be responsible for and dont get it twisted mark has never had a sold out show without ryan there,,,,and in regards to Mark bringing up Mr Fords past incarceration to slander his name,Fuck him, The way I look at it Ryan Ford should and is looked at as a role model especially for troubled youth,That no matter what mistakes you have made you can turn your life around,,As far as him being a douche bag Kev your a loser,Never ever in my life have I seen somebody so accesible to the public,,I have personally seen ryan busy as hell and always stop to take a photo with a fan or to talk, And not just at events but on his personal time with his family,So if that is being a douchebag then I want to be a douche bag to and hope my kids grow up to be douchebags as well

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  15. Darby Soop says:

    Kev’s a bitch, Fuck you Kev……. And its all about the money too, Ford has a family to support so the more money the better for his family…… MFC sucks period and pays shittyyy

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  16. Small Potatoe says:

    If your in MMA for the money…..get out!

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  17. ruckus780 says:

    Darby If you aint in MMA for money,,,,stay in the amateur’s,,,,,fight in the bar,,,,or if you really insist on not getting paid theres always heatxc

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  18. ruckus780 says:

    Darby lol I meant small potato

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