PFL has been steadily making waves ever since they re-branded from WSOF and launched this new ‘season’ type format.
And it looks like they’ve secured a new partner in order to keep gaining footing in the UFC dominated MMA space.
At the DAZN offices in London, PFL CEO Peter Murray and Shay Segev, the CEO of DAZN , made an announcement. Top competitors for the promotion, such Dakota Ditcheva and Stevie Ray were there as well.
Early this year, the promotion agreed to a broadcast agreement with free-to-air UK network Channel 4. However, that collaboration will conclude at the start of 2023. The PFL Championships on November 25 will be the last show to broadcast on Channel 4.
PFL will continue to air on ESPN in the US and Canada. Outside of those two countries, the promotion will showcase its pay-per-view solely on DAZN.
A new international league outside the promotion’s core roster called PFL Europe will launch next year. DAZN will join as a founding partner of that league. In the European league, athletes like Ditcheva, who will return to action for the PFL next month, will contend for a position on the promotion’s main roster.
Regarding the development, Murray said:
“DAZN is a leader of mainstream sports and this illustrates that MMA is mainstream on a major platform like DAZN and fans will now have access to PFL events year-round. I think it’s a mutually beneficial partnership, we recognize the role that DAZN play as a sports leader. We think what they’re doing is very disruptive and innovative, it’s in line with our brand and positioning.”
“This first regional league, PFL Europe, in partnership with DAZN illustrates our global ambition. Over the next three years, we will have at least six regional leagues outside of the US. We’re a fighter first organisation, our focus is to give fighters more opportunities to compete against top talent on major premium platforms and DAZN enables that.”
PFL staged two tournaments in the UK in August. A 10 p.m. embargo prevented Channel 4 from airing the events. Due to the network’s expertise in boxing, Ray thinks the PFL’s choice to collaborate with DAZN is advantageous to both the organisation and the athletes.
“DAZN specialises in boxing, they know what they’re doing and they know how to promote. Whereas with Channel 4, there was a block on some of the PFL cards so they weren’t as experienced in showing combat sports.”
Alex Rodriguez is currently interested in the world of mixed martial arts and believes PFL has a bright future ahead. The New York Yankee superstar invested a huge sum – 30 million dollars and was added to PFL’s board of directors. Alex Rodriguez said in a statement that the reach of MMA is vast and there’s a huge demand for it.
“I love the global reach of MMA. The PFL continues to build and innovate for fans, media and fighters, and there is massive demand in the marketplace.” Rodriguez said.