Covid-19 has not stopped CEO of Dodge Sports, Matthew Dodge, from “continuing to work and continuing to be creative” for all the fighters they represent.
However, he did admit when he spoke with The Scrap that he is lucky to at least have the ability to suntan at his home in Miami, Florida while under quarantine. “The MMA world is on halt for a little bit, but we just got to keep pushing through, stay positive and control what we can,” said Dodge.
While the world is anxiously waiting for MMA fights to start up again, Matt stated that his company is currently concentrating on brand building for their athletes. “We are also focussing a lot of our time and attention on partnerships right now. Corporate partnerships, sponsorships those types of things,” said Dodge. “The businesses still have opportunities with some of our guys to use the eyes and ears that are on social media right now to really market their products and services.”
Speaking about his passage into the world of sports management, Dodge admitted, “it just came to me at a young age. I knew I wanted to be in sports, but I wanted to be in sports in a different way. I was athletic, but I was never good enough to play at a high-level. I’ve always had a passion for sports. I got involved in the NFL when I was 18 representing my first client. I just slowly transitioned into more of a passioned sport, which is MMA/UFC. That continued to grow, get more attention and get more eyes on it. For me it just came to me, I’ve always been fascinated about the ins and outs of an athlete and kind of what happens outside of the lines, or outside of the cage in our industry. It’s been a lot of fun since doing that.”
The manager said Dodge Sports is, “very systematic and very analytical about the people that we bring on.” Some of the fighters currently on the Dodge Sports roster are UFC bantamweight Andre Ewell, former Ultimate Fighter winner Jesse Taylor, and Bellator veteran Fernando Gonzalez. He also has signed many Canadian fighters including top lightweight prospect Anthony Romero who is on a 15-fight win streak, Jasmine Jasudavicius, a straight killer and savage in the women’s strawweight and flyweight divisions, and the first Canadian prospect to be on Contender Series, Aaron Jeffery.
Other blue-chip prospects include featherweight Cole Ferrell, bantamweights Justin Wetzell and Khai Wu, and Alaskan middleweight Aaron Phillips. Dodge said all the athletes signed to his company are all good character individuals. He admits this is a priority to the Dodge Sports family.
Matt said his agency’s approach to sports management is building a lot of the relationships with companies and corporations, to have relationships beyond the game. “It’s important to take advantage of those while you have a great platform now. We take a long-term mentality,” said Dodge. “We really invest heavily in our time, resources, energy, love, and affection with the guys and the girls that we represent.”
For others looking to get into the sports management game, the CEO advises, “you won’t make money for a long, long time and you have to be okay with that. You must be okay with putting in the work, putting in the time and not expecting anything at all in return. If you currently have a job he recommends; “Do what you can in your time off to build your business until it’s sustainable, before putting everything on the line because it does take a long time and it does take a lot of effort until you are successful.”