Bella Mir, daughter of MMA legend Frank Mir, has just made history by becoming the first person to sign a Name, Image, and Likeness (NIL) deal with the UFC. An NIL deal is a huge opportunity given to young athletes that allow them to be compensated for marketing deals despite still being in college. They’re actually commonplace in other major sporting leagues like the NBA and NFL, but no MMA organization on the planet has ever offered one to an athlete before.
This deal is a landmark moment in the history of the sport, as it serves as a signal that the world’s biggest MMA promotion is paying close attention to young athletes even if they’re not yet ready to compete in the octagon. Bellator has previously inked deals with young stars like Aaron Pico in order to prepare them for their professional MMA debut, but the UFC has never signed made anyone an NIL ambassador before. They’ve signed young fighters like Raul Rosas Jr to compete before but they’ve never made their intentions so clear about someone who isn’t even competing in the UFC cage yet.
Of course, there’s a good reason that they’ve chosen to make Bella Mir the first UFC NIL ambassador. She wrestles at the University of Iowa and has already got her MMA career off to a flying start by winning her first three professional fights since she made her debut in impressive style back in 2020.
The news that Bella Mir had just signed the first ever NIL deal with the UFC was announced in a tweet to the official Twitter account for UFC News:
More information ⤵️:
— UFC News (@UFCNews) January 27, 2023
Bella Mir also gave her own thoughts on becoming the very first UFC NIL ambassador:
“I couldn’t be more thankful of these opportunities. Thank you to my mom, dad, brothers and all my family for supporting me through my journey. My coaches here at Iowa and my coaches back home have shaped me to the person I am today and I am so grateful. Thank you Uncle Dana for everything you give me and I am so proud to be the UFC’s first athlete NIL ambassador at the University of Iowa!! GO HAWKS”