The Professional Fighters League (PFL) is set to return this Friday with PFL #3: Harrison vs. Mokhnatkina at the Esports Stadium in Arlington, Texas. The main event features one of the PFL’s largest stars in the reigning women’s lightweight champion Kayla Harrison (12-0) who will be facing off against Marina Mokhnatkina (6-2). The co-main event is a fight between the reigning welterweight champion Ray Cooper III (24-7-1) and Carlos Leal (16-3). Overall, PFL #3 is stacked from top to bottom with stars like Rory MacDonald (22-8-1), Anthony Pettis (24-12), Magomed Magomedkerimov (29-6), Julia Budd (16-3), and many more. The prelims are set to start at 5:30 p.m. ET/2:30 p.m. PT and the main card at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT, the event will be available for streaming on ESPN+.
PFL #3 Main Event: Kayla Harrison vs. Marina Mokhnatkina
The reigning PFL women’s lightweight champion Kayla Harrison is set to kickoff her 2022 season this Friday against Marina Mokhnatkina. Harrison is currently viewed as one of the best pound-for-pound women fighters on the planet. The former two-time Olympics gold medalist has been undefeated since her transition to MMA. Harrison has been with the PFL for most of her professional career that started back in 2018. During that time she has finished all but two of her opponents in her 12 wins. In Harrison’s previous fight for the PFL women’s lightweight gold, she was able to finish Taylor Guardado (3-2) via armbar in the second round. Harrison most recently signed a multi-year contract extension with the promotion and is definitely looking to kickoff the new season on an exciting note.
Mokhnatkina who is scheduled to fight Harrison is no slouch. The Russian fighter kicked off her professional career with three straight submission victories before going on a two-fight skid in 2019. Since then, Mokhnatkina has been on a two-fight win streak beating the likes of Amanda Bell (7-8) and Claudia Zamora (3-3). Mokhnatkina has a strong background in combat sambo and she will be looking to pull off one of the biggest upsets in MMA history if she is able to hand Harrison her first loss.
PFL #3 Co-Main Event: Ray Cooper III vs. Carlos Leal
The reigning champion Cooper III is also coming off of his PFL welterweight championship winning season to face off against the Brazillian fighter Carlos Leal. Cooper III’s last loss came in July 2019 and since then, he has notched six straight victories. In his last fight Cooper III was able to avenge his 2018 PFL championship loss by finishing Magomed Magomedkermov via TKO in the third round. Fighting is in Cooper III’s blood, as his father Ray Cooper Jr. was also a professional fighter between 1997 – 2008.
Leal has been a professional fighter since 2012 and has 16 wins to his name with nine finishes. Leal was able to earn a contract after fighting on both PFL Challenger Series 2 and PFL Challenger Series 8. Prior to that, Leal was the winner of the LFA Welterweight Grand Prix where he defeated Uyran Carlos (12-6) via unanimous decision. Cooper III will be looking to build upon his legacy this Friday with a win against the highly touted Brazilian fighter, while Leal will look to play spoiler.
The Rest of the Card
As previously mentioned, PFL #3 is stacked from top to bottom. Former UFC lightweight champion Anthony Pettis will be facing off against Ireland’s Myles Price (11-7) in his 2022 season debut. Pettis did not have the best start to the PFL chapter of his career, losing to Clay Collard (21-9) via unanimous decision and the eventual PFL lightweight champion Raush Manfio (16-3) via split decision. Pettis is coming into the new season looking fresh, and in better shape than ever.
Price is coming off of a victory against the former Bellator lightweight championship challenger Peter Queally (13-6-1) back in 2019. He is looking to shake off some cage rust as he steps up to face Pettis in the first fight in nearly 39 months.
At welterweight, Rory MacDonald will be locking horns with Brett Cooper (28-15). MacDonald is looking to bounce back after a disappointing 2021 season and Cooper will look to make the best of his sophomore outing with the PFL by knocking off the former Bellator welterweight champion. Moreover, the previously mentioned former PFL champion Magomed Magomedkerimov will be fighting against Brazil’s João Zeferino (26-9) and the former Bellator women’s featherweight champion Julia Budd will be making her regular season debut against Genah Fabian (4-2).
The previously-mentioned fighters and so many others will be featured on this action-packed Friday night that fans will not want to miss. MMASucka will be providing live results along the way.
Main Image via PFL.