Two of the most dominant female fighters in mixed martial arts (MMA) could be on a collision course, as Olympic judo gold medalist and current Professional Fighters League (PFL) lightweight champion, Kayla Harrison, has hinted at a possible move to Bellator for a super fight against the promotion's featherweight champion, Cris Cyborg.
Harrison had been on an absolute tear since transitioning to MMA in 2018, with an unblemished record of 15-0. But her streak was broken by Larissa Pacheco when they met for the third time inside the cage during the 2022 PFL Women's Lightweight Tournament Final.
Since that defeat, Harrison hasn't ventured onto the pitch. She recently made a veiled allusion to her irritation with PFL regarding her lack of participation thus far in 2023.
Notwithstanding recent statements to the effect that she didn't want to repeat the season structure, Harrison intended to be included in the 2023 PFL featherweight season. Harrison will be featured on the PFL's 'super fight division' pay-per-view debut later this year.
For a long time, Harrison has hinted at a confrontation with Cyborg, but it has never taken place. Harrison has suggested another strategic move to force the Cyborg to fight when her PFL contract comes to an end.
"My [PFL] Contract Is Up In December"
Harrison talked about her future in mixed martial arts and the status of the Cyborg match in her most recent conversation with MMA Junkie.
"I know the goal was for me to fight Cyborg, I know the PFL has pushed it as well," Harrison said. "I wanted to do the season format but they felt my best use would be in a big-name fight, pay-per-view fight. It looks like that's not gonna happen...
"I was a little bummed when she re-signed because I really thought it was gonna happen," Harrison continued. "My contract is up in December. Bellator knows where I'm at, and I would love to make that fight happen."
Harrison received an enormous contract from Bellator when she first became free last year. She returned to the league for the 2022 season after PFL agreed to pay the amount she demanded.
Harrison's forthcoming free-agency will be unrestricted and devoid of any matching regulations. She will now have the freedom to unilaterally discuss free agency with various promotions, possibly Bellator.
Whether or not the fight comes to fruition remains to be seen, but one thing is for sure, a clash between two of the most dominant female fighters in the sport would be a must-see event for all MMA fans.