The PFL returned Thursday with postseason spots on the line in the welterweight and light heavyweight divisions.
There was a big surprise in the 2021 PFL 5 main event when Gleison Tibau upset former Bellator welterweight champion Rory MacDonald with a split decision. MacDonald derided the result as a robbery after the fight – but courtesy of a first-round finish in his first fight of the season, he still had enough points to reach the playoffs despite the loss. Tibau’s win was worth 3 points, which wasn’t enough to make the postseason.
Ray Cooper III found himself in an interesting situation, too. He took a unanimous decision from Nikolay Aleksakhin in the welterweight co-main event – but couldn’t earn any points in the standings because he missed weight. In fact, he was docked a point for that infraction. But because not enough fighters below him in the standings did enough to pass him, he still will fight in the four-man bracket to go after a second $1 million prize.
In light heavyweight fights on the main card, Chris Camozzi upset Cezar Ferreira. But Ferreira’s 6-point finish in his first fight remained enough to get him to the postseason, and Camozzi’s 3 points from his unanimous decision wasn’t enough to get him in after a loss in his opening fight. And Emiliano Sordi fought to a draw with Dan Spohn, worth just 1 point each. But that was enough to give Sordi 4 points – and a tiebreaker over Cory Hendricks, who had a 4-point finish of Marthin Hamlet on the prelims.
Despite the loss, Hamlet still made the playoffs with 5 points. Joining him are Antonio Carlos Junior (7) atop the 205-pound table, Ferreira (6) and Sordi (4).
Check out the highlights from 2021 PFL 5 in the video above.