PFL CEO Peter Murray wants to cross-promote with Bellator to make Kayla Harrison vs. Cris Cyborg


Kayla Harrison would’ve had Cris Cyborg in her sights had she accepted a multi-million offer from Bellator MMA. PFL matched ViacomCBS’s promotion deal. She stayed with that promotion since she switched from Olympic judo into MMA.

The PFL hasn’t given up on booking Harrison vs. Cyborg, however. PFL CEO Peter Murray still wants to make the fight happen via cross-promotion.

” We support that,” Murray stated Wednesday on The MMA Hour. “We’ve been out there and Kayla wants that fight. Cris is a believer in that fight. If we can make that happen, between Bellator and the PFL, it would be a joint promotion and event. We’re open to that, but we will consider another route to determine .”


Murray might not need to cross the aisle at the end. Cyborg is slated to defend her featherweight title against Arlene Blencowe at Bellator 279, and afterward, she told, she’ll be a free agent. That could set up another situation where the PFL comes over the top (or the same one in reverse if Bellator has matching rights with Cyborg).

Coker isn’t keen to promote with the PFL. However, he has repeatedly supported the idea of co-promotion with the UFC. The No. 4 (Cyborg) and No. 9 (Harrison), are female fighters in MMA Fighting’s Global Rankings.

That said, Murray believes the promotion’s fourth season will present new challenges that could test Harrison.

“[Harrison vs. Cyborg is] one compelling fight, but there are others for Kayla,” he said. This season is her most difficult yet. With our format, and the longer-term, there are some chances to fight Kayla on pay per-view .

With PFL extending its broadcast partnership with ESPN, Murray believes Harrison will be a centerpiece of the promotion’s future. He hopes that includes a legacy-defining fight with Cyborg, but either way, the former Olympian will be a force to reckon with. This is the reason why the PFL did everything to keep Harrison.

“Athletes have choices. In the end, we wanted to not only resign with ESPN but, as you stated, to keep Kayla. We were thoughtful about how we dealt with Kayla and her management. “That’s one of the most dominant fighters in the sport today – of course there was interest in the marketplace with competitors, but in the end, we struck the right deal and got to the right place. She’ll continue the season and will be participating in our third [in 2022].”