Mixed martial arts fighters turn to the web to help fund training camps

Associated Press

If you can't afford to buy out Jay-Z's share of the Brooklyn Nets or purchase a Kentucky Derby hopeful, how about putting what dollars you can afford into supporting an MMA fighter?

UFC bantamweight contender Cat Zingano is the latest to become part of FundaFighter.com which offers fans a chance to help finance a fighter, in exchange for gear, a simple shout out or some up close and personal attention.

Any money raised goes to the costs of Zingano's current and next training camps.

A win over Miesha Tate on Saturday in Las Vegas and the Colorado bantamweight earns a shot at UFC champion (Rowdy) Ronda Rousey.

Donors who make a $10 contribution to Zingano get a thank you on the website. A $100 gift will get you a 30-minute phone conversation with the fighter while $2,500 is worth a two-day seminar taught by Zingano at a gym anywhere in North America.

If you're willing to go to her, $200 gets you a one-hour personal training session at Zingano's gym in Colorado.

You can score Zingano's worn practice shorts for $125. Double that and you'll get her walkout shirt for the Tate fight.

"I'm really excited to connect with the fans in a different way," Zingano said in a news release this week. "Please suggest other rewards you would like to see."

The website's slogan is Fans Fuelling Fighters.

It has already raised a total of about $35,000 for the 10 to 15 fighters who have used it to date — plus $7,000 to help pay for an operation for UFC fighter Dan Miller's son.

Robbie Stein, owner of the building that houses Montreal's renowned Tristar Gym, is one of the people behind the fundraising concept.

Fund a Fighter's team gets 15 per cent out of the fundraising budget from each fighter, paid out after the campaign goal is reached.

The website says it provides ongoing support to the fighters "through technical, PR and administrative assistance, our ever-expanding community and the utilization of its economies of scale to help them put together unique incentive packages and promotional materials."

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Fund a Fighter

http://fundafighter.com/

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