Cris Cyborg open to fighting Larissa Pacheco, but wants Kayla Harrison matchup first

Bellator women’s featherweight champion Cris Cyborg isn’t scared to fight anyone, but she definitely has a preference for who should be next.

Cyborg wants her debut under the PFL to come against Kayla Harrison, not Larissa Pacheco, which was the name PFL had in mind for her first fight after the acquisition of Bellator.

Cyborg and Harrison have a feud that spans over the past couple of years, and she strongly believes that should be the first order of business.

“I don’t have any problem fighting Larissa Pacheco, she’s the champion, but we’ve been promoting this fight against Kayla Harrison for three years,” Cyborg told MMA Junkie Radio. “You can use the opportunity after this fight to promote for Larissa.

“I think everyone is waiting for me and Kayla Harrison. But I don’t have any problem fighting Larissa, but I believe you have to start promoting this fight. First is Kayla Harrison.”

Pacheco won the 2023 women’s featherweight championship. PFL’s original plan was to match up PFL champions against Bellator champions – which it already has for the first PFL vs. Bellator card on Feb. 24. The only champion not booked for the card is Pacheco.

Harrison, one of the biggest names in the promotion, fought out her PFL contract in a non-season bout during the 2023 championship event in November. She defeated Aspen Ladd by unanimous decision. It’s unknown for now if she’s going to re-sign with the promotion.

Cyborg is a former UFC, Strikeforce, Invicta FC and current Bellator champion, and is regarded by many as the best women’s featherweight in the history of MMA. Cyborg is unsure who she’ll fight next, but adding the PFL belt to her collection is of interest.

“I never thought I was going to have all the belts,” Cyborg said. “At the beginning of my career, I wanted to be the best in the world, but I never thought about the belts. I feel very, very blessed and thankful for all the opportunities I’ve had because at the beginning of my career there weren’t a lot of girl fights. Now, you see how women’s MMA has grown so much, and I continue to fight. People continue to call out my name to fight me. … I feel very blessed”

Story originally appeared on MMA Junkie