After months of speculation and uncertainty, the future of one of the most sought-after free agents in MMA was announced this week. Harrison, a two-time Olympic gold medalist and undefeated lightweight is set for some more years fighting under the promotional banner of the rising PFL organization.
“I’m happy the free agency is over and I have a fight on the horizon,” Harrison told The New York Post via text. “I’m excited to continue to grow and challenge myself and be one of the highest-paid athletes in the sport.”
And one of the highest-paid athletes she certainly is, if her manager is to be believed.
Per journalist Aaron Bronsteter, Abdelaziz has said his client has shot to the top of the ladder in women’s MMA when it comes to financial gain following the signing of a new lucrative contract.
“I spoke with Harrison’s manager @AliAbdelaziz00, who said ‘the PFL stepped up in a big way and Kayla is now the highest paid women’s mixed martial artist ever. I want to thank everyone who was involved in getting the deal done and in particular, Peter Murray and Ray Sefo.'”
Given that she’s only 12 fights and four years deep into her career, if true, Harrison’s status as the highest-paid female MMA fighter ever is certainly an impressive achievement.
Harrison Will Pursue A 3rd PFL Title In 2022
While a return to the PFL seemed likely a number of weeks ago, a late offer from Bellator seemingly threw a spanner in the works. If that came to fruition, a long-awaited clash between Harrison and Cris Cyborg, who have been going back and forth on social media for months, would have been a possibility.
Unfortunately for Bellator kingpin Scott Coker, his rival for her signature was able to match the offer, thus paving the way for this week’s confirmation.
With her future finally laid out following five months of discussion and a tied-down place on the sport’s rumor mill, Harrison will now turn her attention to what she seemingly does best—destroying her competition inside the PFL cage and capturing gold.
Having previously secured $1 million checks and championship glory in both 2019 and 2021, the Ohio native will be looking for a third successive dose of PFL glory when she returns for the 2022 season.
With the addition of former Bellator featherweight champion Julia Budd to the equation, this year promises to provide the former Judoka with her stiffest tests to date.
Do you think re-signing with PFL was the correct move for Kayla Harrison?