PFL agrees to new multiyear broadcast deal with ESPN

The Professional Fighters League has renewed its domestic media rights agreement with ESPN, officials announced Thursday.

The deal will keep the PFL regular season, playoffs and world championships on ESPN and ESPN+ in the U.S. in a "multiyear" package. ESPN will also distribute the company's pay-per-view Super Fight Division, which will feature the likes of professional boxer and influencer Jake Paul and former UFC heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou, among others.

"We've had five successful seasons on ESPN and we're excited for the next phase of growth for MMA and the Professional Fighters League with this agreement," PFL CEO Peter Murray said in a statement. "Our innovative sport-season format, elite roster of athletes and the launch of the PFL PPV Super Fight Division are ushering in the new era of MMA as a mainstream global sports entertainment platform."

News of the PFL's renewal with ESPN comes less than two weeks after its announcement it had acquired Bellator MMA from Paramount in a landmark deal. The PFL will continue to operate Bellator as a separate brand, but all Bellator athletes are now available to cross over onto PFL platforms. The PFL is planning a champions vs. champions event in 2024, likely in the first quarter.

In addition to its season format and Bellator events, the PFL has launched an International League series, which is expected to eventually involve leagues in Europe, Australia and Africa. It also includes the PFL Challenger Series, which is aimed at recruiting and developing new talent.