Anthony Pettis is receptive to new challenges after departing from UFC. The fighter joined Singapore based PFL brand after the discharge of his UFC contract.
After winning the final fight of his UFC contract, Anthony Pettis decided to not go to any extent for an extension. Instead, the former UFC Lightweight champion shocked the observers by taking a bold step of exploring the free market. With the stature he carries, the 33-year-old found his new professional zone within 48 hours after leaving UFC. And now with all set and done Pettis is determined to create an impact in the Professional Fighters League.
Moving on from the spillovers of why he left UFC, in a recent interview with MMA Fighting, Showtime expressed excitement about becoming a part of a new promotion after 11 years and cited he has high aspirations, with new opportunities set to come his way.
Anthony Pettis on why he chose PFL over other promotions
“I was looking at a couple of deals, a couple of opportunities and the PFL just made the most sense to me, especially at this point in my career,” Pettis said. “Their format for becoming a champion, I can become a champion in 12 months. It’s a season. I know when I’m gonna fight, it’s definitely a whole different experience for me having the tournament-style like this.
“And also I get to be the face of this company. I know there’s other big names in this, but I’m taking it on my own shoulders to be the face of this company. I feel like it’s my job to make this company a household name and people want to tune in and know when the next PFL fights are happening. That was another big thing for me, saying yes to this part of my career. Bellator, ONE FC, same kind of concept of the UFC, I’d have to work my way up to a title shot.
“I have to find out who’s the next guy in line, try that aspect, whereas this is laid out how to become a champion. I know how to do it. It’s in 12 months, in a year’s span, there’s 10 guys in my division and only four of ‘em I have to beat, so it’s exciting for me.”
Anthony Pettis is in high spirits ahead of his PFL debut
While apparently, the popular opinion may suggest it is a mistake to leave the leading MMA promotion in the world but, Anthony Pettis houses a different opinion, and states that at this point in his career he wanted a new beginning and thus PFL turned out to be the ideal place for a square one scenario.
“I wasn’t getting cut,” Pettis said. “I wasn’t on the chopping block, I had an offer from the UFC. But that offer was like putting me back in the same rat race I’ve been in, if you will. I’ve been in that rat race. I know I was going down to 155, everybody’s trying to get that belt again. There’s some names in front of me. It would have been fun to go back and take care of some guys that I know I could have beaten and that I lost to, but when I made this decision I took all that emotion away from it.
“I took away trying to be a champion in the UFC, trying to come back from losses that I had, rematches that I wanted. What makes sense for my career? What makes sense for Anthony Pettis right now? It didn’t take long. I knew what my goals were and these guys are giving me a format for it.”
‘I still am nervous’
“It was probably one of the most nervous days of my life,” Pettis said when asked what it was like to sign the PFL contract. “It was making a big decision. Like I’ve said, the UFC’s been nothing but great to me. I’ve had the best opportunities, I’ve gotten treated very, very well in the UFC, taken care of very, very well. Great opportunities. I grew up under them lights, them gloves are part of my life.
“Then deciding that I’m going to go see what’s next, the next part of my career, the next chapter of my career, turning the page onto the next part of my career, I was nervous. I still am nervous. Anything could happen.”
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