HOLLYWOOD, FL. – The Professional Fighters League today hosted the 2021 PFL World Championship press conference from the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, FL, where 12 finalists across six divisions previewed their $1 million title fights taking place on Wednesday, October 27 across ESPN networks and streaming platforms. The world-class competitors were joined on stage by two-time Olympic gold medalist Claressa Shields – who will make her second appearance in the PFL SmartCage at the event – and her opponent Abigail Montes.
The biggest night in MMA, with six world titles and $6 million up for grabs, will be the thrilling conclusion to the tremendously successful third season for PFL which has seen 100 percent audience growth.
PFL CEO Peter Murray opened the press conference by congratulating the competitors for their remarkable achievements in advancing through the league’s unique true-season format to the world championship. He also announced that the league will strengthen its deep talent pool heading into next year and has signed former world champion Julia Budd to compete in the 2022 PFL Season. One of the best fighters around the globe and holding a 15-3 MMA record, she will make her debut at the PFL World Championship in a showcase bout.
With the eyes of the MMA world focused on the PFL World Championship, it was announced that multi-platinum GRAMMY & Golden Globe nominated recording artist and PFL investor, Wiz Khalifa, will perform live from the event on October 27.
“PFL has seen incredible growth in 2021 and continues to lead the MMA world in innovation,” Murray said. “October 27th will be the culmination of a season of hard work and dedication by these elite PFL athletes. This will be a night to crown champions, showcase new stars, watch a special performance by Wiz Khalifa and set the stage for 2022 which will feature a new Pay-Per-View division and contender series.”
“It’s an amazing feat to have a zero in the loss column. I have seen the highest of highs and lowest of lows,” women’s lightweight finalist Kayla Harrison said. “Being undefeated is not the ultimate goal; it is to grow personally and professionally. I am not afraid of a loss, some of my biggest lessons have come after losses. I don’t think I will lose; but whatever happens I will embrace the journey.”
“I think I’ll be a lot better than I was in my pro debut. I was a little nervous and was looking out for so many things,” Shields said. “We’re going to continue to build off that performance and I will become a better fighter overall. I want to be at the top of the tournament in the future.”
“I’m going to do the same thing I always do, [Magomed Magomedkerimov] can say what he wants,” welterweight finalist Ray Cooper III said. “At the end of the day I am going to punch him in the face. Finally I get to pay him back and retain my title.”
Roberto Villa is the CEO, Founder, Executive Writer, Senior Editor of FightBook MMA. Has a passion for Combat Sports and also a podcast host for Sitting Ringside. He’s also a former MMA fighter and Kickboxer.
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