KEY POINTS

  • PFL continues its meteoric rise in the MMA scene
  • PFL 5 hopes to help the promotion maintain its amazing start this season
  • Rory MacDonald vs. Gleison Tibau headlines PFL 5 on June 17

The 2021 regular season of the Professional Fighters League (PFL) has definitely lived up to the hype.

A little over halfway into the season, there have already been a number of memorable moments, from highly-anticipated debuts, stunning upsets, and historic finishes.

Once again, the fastest-growing sports league in the world is showing exactly why it has established itself as the No.2 player in the highly-aggressive mixed martial arts (MMA) industry today.

The 2021 season saw the debuts of some of the biggest names in the combat sports industry, with Anthony Pettis, Rory MacDonald, Fabricio Werdum and Claressa Shields all stepping inside the PFL cage for the first time.

This season also proved that anything can happen in MMA, with Pettis and Werdum--both heavy favorites to be crowned champions at the end of the season--figuring in stunning results.

Indeed, every fight does matter in PFL as Pettis fights to keep his championship dreams alive. Meanwhile, Werdum tries to bounce back from a forgettable promotional debut.

It’s this kind of excitement and unpredictability that helped  PFL land a primetime slot for PFL 3 back in May.

To kick off the second half of the season, PFL brought in arguably their biggest off-season signing in the form of three-division boxing champion Shields, who made her MMA debut against the dangerous Brittney Elkin.

Shields bucked a slow start to pick up a dominant third-round TKO win and move one step closer to realizing her goal of becoming a simultaneous boxing and MMA champion.

Apart from the talent and the action inside the cage, PFL has also managed to grow even bigger in terms of partnerships and deals, having recently linked up with BetMGM, Fanaply, and many others.

The PFL team has also gotten bigger, with the addition of Kenny Florian on the commentary booth, Wiz Khalifa and Marshawn Lynch on the ownership side, and Ray Lewis on the athlete advisory board.

PFL Event inside Octagon PFL Event inside Octagon Photo: PFL photo release

This season has definitely been a momentous one for PFL, and with two more regular-season events as well as the playoffs and finals still to come, there’s definitely a lot more in store for fans to watch out for.

The PFL 2021 regular season continues this coming Thursday, June 17th for PFL 5, featuring Rory MacDonald vs. Gleison Tibau in the main event.

In the co-headliner, Ray Cooper III takes on Nikolay Aleksakhin.

 Catch it live on ESPN2 starting at 9:00 PM ET.