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Mads Burnell Praises PFL Format Meant for 'True Fighters'



Mads Burnell believes if you’re a true fighter, the Professional Fighters League an ideal place to compete.

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Burnell headlines PFL 5 at the Huntsman Center in Salt Lake City, Utah, opposite Clay Collard on June 21. The card featuring lightweight and light heavyweight bouts marks the promotion’s debut in Utah. This will also mark a turnaround of a little over two months from Burnell’s PFL debut in April.

While newcomers at the PFL often have difficulty adjusting to the frequency of the fights, Burnell absolutely loves the quick turnaround. The PFL season format features fighters across six weight classes competing in two regular season bouts to decide who will proceed to the playoffs, which consists of semifinals and a final, with $1 million at stake. The season format combined with the pay-per-view cards and now Bellator events, keeps PFL fighters more active than most other promotions. Burnell believes the PFL is for true fighters who are just keen on competing instead of handpicking matchups.

“I love it. I love the quick turnaround and not having to wait like three, six [months], however long you have to wait in between your fights,” Burnell said during a recent media call. “And that's a thing I think more promotions need to get on, like why the f—k do we fight? We fight because it's fun. We love it. Of course we want to and get paid as well, right? So not all this picking and choosing, just get in there, put on fights. Yeah, I love the PFL tournament format. I think it's super cool. And especially if you're like a true fighter and you just wanna get in there, PFL is 100% the place to be.”

Burnell was retained by the PFL after the promotion’s takeover of Bellator in November, 2023. Burnell moved up a weight class, to lightweight, for his PFL debut this past April, when he suffered a second-round submission loss to Michael Dufort, snapping a two-fight winning streak. However, the Danish prospect did feel comfortable in his new division.

“My biggest takeaway was how great I felt going up a weight class,” Burnell said. “I've never felt as good as going into that fight and the weight cut and all that stuff. So that's probably the biggest takeaway, how great I felt at lightweight.”
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