For years, the Professional Fighters League (PFL) has laid claim to being the number 2-mixed martial arts (MMA) promotion in the world, in terms of multiple indicators including roster talent, reach, distribution, and others.
PFL CEO Peter Murray said as much in a 2022 interview with MMA Junkie. “You look at Bellator, its distribution, it’s relegated to unrated cable networks and digital platforms,” Murray said. “We have broader reach. We have more quality distribution. We distribute to more countries. Our cards, we have over 30 percent of our fighters who are ranked in the top 25 in the world. We have more content and we have a much bigger sponsorship business. So you bet, we’re No. 2 doing it.”
Now, the PFL has also grabbed the distinction of being the number 2-MMA promotion in terms of social media engagement, as reported by Forbes.com’s Brian Mazique, who spoke to Jonathan Cohen of Bedrock PR.
Across social media platforms such as Facebook, X (formerly Twitter), Instagram, YouTube, and TikTok, the PFL totals 7.27 million followers, which is quite impressive given that the league has only been around for six years, as compared to counterparts like the UFC and Bellator, who have been around for over a decade.
PFL’s Incredible Rise
According to the Forbes story, the PFL has been the second-most mentioned in tweets between May to July of 2023, second only to the UFC.
They also noted that the recent signing of heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou was one of the biggest reasons for the surge in mentions. Following a lengthy ‘free-agency period’ so to speak, Ngannou – the former undisputed UFC Heavyweight Champion – signed with the PFL back in May as a fighter and Chairman of PFL Africa.
The story also mentioned Ngannou’s compatriot Cedric Doumbe as a top focus of discussion on social media. The Cameroonian-French kickboxer inked a deal with the PFL also back in May and is expected to make his debut later this year.
Apart from recent big name signings – which also includes Jake Paul and Amanda Serrano – the PFL has also given people a lot to talk about in terms of the exciting MMA action and storylines that they have managed to deliver to fans each season. From inspiring stories to must-see moments and even unexpected results, the action inside the PFL’s SmartCage has definitely been buzz-worthy.
Just last week, the PFL kicked off this season’s Playoff Round, and already it produced one of the biggest upsets in league history, with Jesus Pinedo knocking out perennial favorite Bubba Jenkins to advance to the Featherweight Finals.
Later this month, the PFL Playoffs continue with action in the Lightweight, Welterweight, Heavyweight, and Women’s Featherweight divisions. Can MMA fans expect to see even more unexpected endings and can’t-miss content? It’s highly-likely.