Following a long free agency period, Kayla Harrison inked a new multi-fight, multi-year deal to remain with the PFL after the promotion matched a lucrative offer made to the two-time Olympic gold medalist from Bellator MMA.
The new contract will earn Harrison a lot of money on top of a potential $1 million bonus if she wins during the PFL season for the third consecutive year in a row. With her immediate future secured, Harrison is anxious to get back to work while discovering her true worth after testing the open market.
” I think there was a lot contract negotiations. There were many offers. Many of them were very lucrative,” Harrison stated on ESPN SportsCenter Tuesday. The PFL was able to match my contract and the PFL stepped in big. I am now staying with them. I’m excited.
” I spoke to Donn Davis last evening and he stated that my goals and how I challenge myself are still achievable and that the PFL is there to support me. 100 Percent They’re not afraid to pay big money and bring over big name fighters to come over and challenge me.”
Harrison is sure to be paid for the new contract, but she and the PFL will be subject to criticism about the type of competition that she will face.
Harrison’s perfect 12-0 career record with the PFL has seen her defeat every opponent with 10 knockouts or submissions. Only two of those fights were decided.
“On one hand, I don’t disagree with them. Harrison stated that she understood the situation when she addressed her PFL competition. They want me to fight the best dogs. I want to see me fight the top dogs. I won’t run from anyone. I’m not hiding from anybody. I am more than willing to take on any challenge, no matter how big or small, at any given time. I am ready to become the best. It’s clear that I am not yet there. Although I realize that I am not yet there in the eyes of the fans and the MMA community, I have the will to get there.
“I can only fight who’s in front of me. It’s my job to get into the cage, try to make the most of myself. I also don’t wish to disrespect any women I have fought and those who challenged me. They are all amazing people, incredible athletes, and I believe they do their best. So I take nothing away from them.”
Between seasons, the PFL did sign former Bellator champion Julia Budd to the roster but higher profile fighters such as Cris Cyborg and Amanda Nunes remain in other organizations.
Harrison admits she would love the opportunity to fight any potential opponent, but she is confident that the PFL will make it happen.
“I set a goal to become the best,” Harrison stated. “I know I’m going to have to fight the greatest so now it’s time for me to invite them to come get a piece of me. It seems like I will have to call people out. It’s not clear. I’ve got to figure out a way to make it happen. I believe that it will happen. It is only a matter time, and it will happen when I am ready.
” I’m participating in the PFL Season. I believe it starts in May. There are four more fights I need to win the title, and I am excited for a fight with an established fighter. PFL assured me, and said that they didn’t mind if I had to promote or co-promote it, that no matter if it was on Pluto or Earth, they still want that fight to happen .”
The PFL announced that Harrison would be resigning from the promotion and will launch a pay-per-view “super fight division”, which is likely to include the lightweight champion twice.
First things first, Harrison is mostly just ready to put all the contract talk behind her as she prepares to compete in the upcoming PFL season starting later this year.
“I’ve got four hard fights to win,” Harrison said. “I’ve got a long season ahead of me. Four fights in five months is no joke. It takes a toll on your mind and your body and I’m excited to get back in there.
“It’s been a long layoff. Free agency was all right, but I’m ready to get back to doing what I love.”