Mike Brown: ‘It’s PFL’s job’ to bring Kayla Harrison top competition, ‘and that’s what they’re doing’

American Top Team head coach Mike Brown knows Kayla Harrison is willing to fight anyone. PFL just needs to bring quality opponents to her.

Harrison (15-0) is widely considered one of the best female fighters in the sport, but the one knock on her resume has been the level of competition in PFL. The two-time Olympic gold medalist in judo has run through everyone she’s faced, en route to back-to-back PFL lightweight titles.

Harrison openly has said she’d be willing to face women’s MMA greats Amanda Nunes and Cris Cyborg. But with each fighter in a different organization, some form of cross promotion with the UFC or Bellator has to happen, or someone will have to come to PFL.

“She just wants to prove that she’s the best fighter on the planet regardless of what organization,” Brown told MMA Junkie. “So whatever that takes, whether that means doing single fights and bringing in some of the best fighters on the planet, that’s what needs to be done, because that’s all she cares about.

“I mean, the tournament helps do that, and that’s how we’ve got here today, but at the end of the day, she wants to be the No. 1 fighter on the planet, and now it’s PFL’s job to bring them to her, and that’s what they’re doing. They’re doing a great job there, they’re throwing big money at many high-level fighters out there and trying to pull them in, and we’ll see if there’s any takers.”


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Perhaps recently signed former UFC fighter Aspen Ladd could be that next step up. But first Ladd has to get past Julia Budd on Nov. 25 at Hulu Theater at Madison Square Garden in New York. In the headliner of that night, Harrison chases her third lightweight title when she takes on Larissa Pacheco in a trilogy bout.

The general notion is that the UFC possesses the best talent. But Brown believes Harrison doesn’t need to compete in the octagon to prove she’s No. 1. He thinks it’s more about the fighters she faces than the platform.

“Some people might think that, but personally I don’t,” Brown said. “I think they need to maybe bring in some of the big names that – she could fight elsewhere, but it wouldn’t be any harm bringing like Cyborg to her. No problem. Bring them to her, and she’ll knock them down. It doesn’t matter where it’s at. It’s about beating those people.”


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Story originally appeared on MMA Junkie