Last week, two-time Olympic gold medalist Kayla Harrison smashed her way to yet another victory in the PFL. Following her victory, Harrison proclaimed herself “the baddest woman in any room she walks into” and talk immediately began to turn to fantasy matchmaking Harrison with UFC featherweight champion Amanda Nunes. However, almost as quickly as fan imaginations got revved up, UFC President Dana White threw cold water on the idea, questioning whether Harrison is ready to come to the UFC.
Well, Harrison doesn’t think much of that.
Speaking with ESPN yesterday, Harrison laughed off White’s attempts to downplay her and stated unequivocally that she was ready.
“I think that if Dana is ready to pay me a lot of money, I’ll make him a lot of money,” Harrison said. “...I have stated many times, I’m ready to face the best in the world.”
Ready and able are two very different things though. Harrison is still currently locked into a contract with the PFL for another three fights. Harrison has also spent nearly her entire career in the PFL (save for a one-off bout in Invicta last year when the PFL was inactive due to COVID) and the organization has invested a lot in her. However, following last year’s PFL hiatus and the inability of the organization to bring in marquee names for Harrison to compete against, the double Olympic gold medalist has made it clear that a split could be coming after this PFL season is over.
“My job is to take care of Kayla Harrison, my job is to go down as the greatest of all time,” Harrison said. “That is my goal for myself. I begged, I begged the PFL to sign (Cris) Cyborg when she was a free agent. I begged them. I wanted all these girls who are top fighters, who are free agents to be in the PFL. I’m not in control of that. It’s the PFL’s job to bring in top competition. If they cannot bring in top competition, I do not know what’s gonna happen but you know my goal so I’m pretty sure everyone can figure it out.
“I mean, are any top-10 fighters in the PFL right now for me?”
To be fair, there aren’t many top-10 fighters for Harrison to compete against anywhere. Harrison has primarily competed at lightweight, a division essentially built for her. However, Harrison has made the 145-pound weight limit before and that seems to be where her future lies, though even that weight class is far from overflowing with names. But such that those names exist, they currently compete for either the UFC or Bellator which seems to imply that very soon, Harrison will be a free agent. And once she does become one, it’s off to the races for her career.
“I feel like I will go down as the greatest of all time,” Harrison said. “I’m staking my claim now, I’m putting it out there for all the world to know. I believe in myself. I believe I will be the greatest of all time.”
Harrison won gold medals at the the 2012 and 2016 Olympic games in judo. She made her MMA debut in 2018 and has since racked up a sterling record of 9-0 with seven finishes. She won the 2019 PFL lightweight season and is the astronomical favorite to win this season as well.
$$$. Conor McGregor tops Forbes’ highest-paid athletes list for 2021.
Spider. Anderson Silva received offers to fight in Japan, but likely ‘done’ with MMA.
Wait. Jon Jones shoots down talk of Stipe Miocic fight next: ‘I’m willing to wait’.
185. Paulo Costa vs. Jared Cannonier headlines Aug. 21 UFC event.
Cut. 9 fighters no longer on UFC roster, including Yorgan De Castro, Justine Kish.
UFC 262 Media Day.
10 memorable UFC debuts.
Best of El Cucuy.
Throwback to Conor predicting he’d top the Forbes list. Got there.
Heavy Hands. In-depth analysis of the main event at UFC 262.
Jack Slack. Previewing the key fights at UFC 262.
SOCIAL MEDIA BOUILLABAISSE
He has many.
Hey Conor can I borrow a dollar @TheNotoriousMMA— Brian BOOM Kelleher (@brianboom135) May 12, 2021
@MoTownPhenom I need an opponent I’m down to welcome you to welterweight? #13vs13— Sean BRADY (@seanbradymma) May 12, 2021
Let’s talk https://t.co/M1cQ4lhneM— Kevin MTP Lee (@MoTownPhenom) May 12, 2021
Wow he can talk and respond to callouts https://t.co/xqfPAgXVzp— Rafael “Ataman” Fiziev (@RafaelFiziev) May 13, 2021
When I see fights being booked all the way for September already and I’m here still hoping to fight in June pic.twitter.com/dqZCsT8tx3— Rafael “Ataman” Fiziev (@RafaelFiziev) May 12, 2021
Lol #2checksss pic.twitter.com/muxMdqGBOf— Derek Brunson (@DerekBrunson) May 12, 2021
I swear I get dms from some of the nicest people pic.twitter.com/a78OenZvxC— Chase Hooper (@chase_hooper) May 13, 2021
More heat in the bantamweight division— UFC (@ufc) May 12, 2021
Your #UFCVegas27 poster just dropped.
[ @RobSFont vs @Cody_NoLove | Sat May 22 ] pic.twitter.com/rKG5XuEJf5
Paul Daley (43-17-2) vs. Jason Jackson (14-4); Bellator 260, June 11.
Islam Makhachev (19-1) vs. Thiago Moises (4-2); UFC Fight Night, July 17.
Paulo Costa (13-1) vs. Jared Cannonier (13-5); UFC Fight Night, Aug. 21.
Thiago Santos (21-9) vs. Johnny Walker (18-5); UFC Fight Night, Sep. 25.
Thanks for reading and see y’all tomorrow.
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