Local gold medalist Kayla Harrison to return to MMA ring this month

Kayla Harrison, a Middletown native, has announced she will return to the mixed martial arts ring this month.

Harrison, the Professional Fighters League 2019 lightweight champion, said she will fight Courtney King Nov. 20 at Invicta FC 43. Harrison will drop to 145 pounds for the first time in her career when she takes on King in the co-main event in Kansas City.

With the PFL on hold for the entire 2020 season due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Harrison will compete under the Invicta FC banner before returning in April for the 2021 PFL season, according to reports.

Undefeated in seven career fights, all under the PFL banner, Harrison is a two-time Olympic gold medalist in judo.

Earlier this year, when the PFL said it would shut down for the year, Harrison said she expected the league to honor its contract and offer her two fights in 2020.

“The only thing you can’t buy in life is time,” Harrison, 29, told ESPN. “The one thing I can’t ever get back is time. And I can’t afford to take 15 months off in the prime of my career. I don’t fight for money, I don’t fight for anything other than the glory, the legacy, the fact I want to be the best in the world at what I do.”

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