Cris Cyborg reacts to Kayla Harrison’s ’emotional’ callout for a gym fight, re-signing with PFL


Cris Cyborg and Kayla Harrison remain signed to different MMA organizations, but their bad blood continues.

A two-time Olympic gold medalist who became a rising star in the MMA world by winning two consecutive seasons in the PFL as a lightweight, Harrison shopped her talents around during her free agency period before eventually re-signing with PFL.

Cyborg, the Bellator featherweight queen, said she never expected Harrison to actually leave the promotion for a run in Bellator or the UFC.

“I wasn’t surprised,” Cyborg said on Wednesday’s episode of Trocacao Franca, the Portuguese-language podcast of MMA Fighting. “I knew she would stay at PFL. I believe it was just [marketing], but knew she would sign with them.”

As soon as it was reported that Harrison had been considering resigning from PFL following the match of Bellator’s offer by the company, Cyborg sent a tweet to Harrison which prompted Harrison to respond.

“I think she got emotional, right?” said Cyborg, who’s scheduled to defend her Bellator featherweight title on Saturday in a main-event rematch with Arlene Blencowe at Bellator 279. “I think she got emotional. I don’t know if the eye [emoji] triggered her or what, but we have to be professionals. This is a new generation.”

Once Harrison and Cyborg were again under contract with various promotions, it was assumed that the doors to a possible clash of the two men had been closed.

However, officials from the PFL expressed interest in co-promotions with Bellator for making this superfight possible.

” I believe she must have signed with Bellator for this to occur,” Cyborg stated. “We don’t know what will happen in the future, if this fight will really happen. I’ll continue my work and train, now focused on Arlene [Blencowe], and not think right now about people I might fight in the future. I’ll just focus on Arlene now.”

The future may also include fights in other sports for the Brazilian star, it seems.

Cyborg has knocked out opponents in 20 of her 25 wins, including stoppages of Julia Budd, Marloes Coenen, Gina Carano and Leslie Smith, and has tested herself under Muay Thai rules twice nearly a decade ago, going the distance in a loss to Muay Thai phenom Jorina Baars.

With the increase in MMA fighters in boxing, Cyborg may also be tempted to try her hand at the squared circle.

“I had the opportunity in my career to compete in Muay Thai, jiu-jitsu and wrestling, and still haven’t had the opportunity to box,” she said. “For sure, I want to box before I end my career. It’s possible, though I do not know when, but I have been practicing to be ready to box .”

At the end of it all, Cyborg says she is happy to start a new era under Bellator and that there’s no pressure against someone who has beaten her in the past.

“I like to fight and I love what I do,” Cyborg said. “I’ve been doing this for 20 years. People ask me, ‘Cris, what else do you want to conquer in your career?’ I love what I do and I use this opportunity to share my faith and help people. I’m the champion in the cage but I want to be a champion in other people’s lives as well.

“That’s the legacy I wanna leave. I want to transform lives and defend my belt. It’s just like every other fight. I’ve worked hard and dedicated, and I’ll give my best. All wins and all other things I give to God .”