Kayla Harrison commented on the recent rumors that the Professional Fighters League is in the process of purchasing Bellator and what that could mean for a long-teased matchup with general consensus women’s MMA GOAT Cris Cyborg.
Harrison is coming off the first setback of her career, suffering a unanimous decision defeat at the hands of Larissa Pacheco at the 2022 PFL Championship. While the loss certainly hurt some of the intrigue surrounding the two-time Olympic gold medalist, fans are still clamoring to see Harrison go toe-to-toe with Cris Cyborg. If rumors regarding a buyout of Bellator MMA by Harrison’s current combat sports home, PFL, prove to be true, it could play right into Harrison’s desire to step inside the cage with Bellator’s reigning featherweight champion.
Speaking with Mike Owens in a MiddleEasy exclusive, Harrison was asked about her thoughts on the potential merger between the PFL and Bellator.
“I mean, I saw something on Instagram, but I don’t know how true that it all is,” Harrison said. “I haven’t heard anything. It would be news to me for sure. I know probably less than you know about that. I’m very disconnected from the news cycle of MMA and the news cycle of the world in general.”
Left out of the 2023 season, Harrison believes the PFL intends to deliver on the promises of a superfight for her next appearance inside the Smart Cage.
“I think it’ll be a big name,” Harrison revealed. “I think that’s why I’m not in the season. They feel like my… It’s a better use of me to put me against a big name versus putting me in a season. I’m pretty sure my next fight will be against a big opponent. That’s what we want”
Asked who her opponent might be, Kayla Harrison confirmed the name that has been on the top of her list for years.
“I think everybody knows that would be [Cris] Cyborg. I mean, she’s the only readily available higher-weight class free agent. I think that everyone knows the goal is probably for me to fight Cyborg.”
Kayla Harrison May Not Know What Her Future Holds, But She’s Ready to Embrace It No Matter What
With Kayla Harrison set to become a free agent by the end of 2023, the two-time PFL champion admits that she has not made any plans for 2024 other than continuing to establish herself as the best fighter in the world.
“I don’t have a plan. Go fight, be the best,” Harrison responded.
Her loss to Larissa Pacheco, compounded by multiple setbacks in her personal life, has led Kayla Harrison to embrace the beauty of life and whatever it brings, both good and bad. She may not know what the future holds for her just yet, but she’s confident in her ability to handle whatever curveballs life throws her way.
“I have a beautiful life and my life is one of hope,” Harrison continued. “I have hope for the future. I have hope for my children. I think that truly everyone is on their own journey, but when you are ready to, I’m gonna use that word again, surrender. When you are ready to say, ‘I don’t want to live this way. It’s too much. I can’t bear it anymore,’ and you be here and now, sh*t… Amazing things happen and continue to happen.
“There’s always going to be a new indignity. There’s always going to be a dog barking. There’s always going to be someone who gets sick. There’s always going to be a hurdle or a roadblock or a stumble or a failure or a f*ck up. That’s always going to happen, but life is so beautiful and so precious and so truly amazing to the people who choose to see it that way and I’m one of those people now.”