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Taila Santos 'very happy' in PFL, hopes to fight in Brazil


Taila Santos has zero regrets about joining the PFL after her UFC stint ended late last year.

The top-ranked women's flyweight signed with the PFL in March and made her debut in April, defeating Ilara Joanne by first-round submission to climb to No. 2 in the divisional standings.

"The UFC is a much bigger enterprise," Santos told theScore through an interpreter. "They have a lot more people working on every fight week. But, honestly, on our side, we didn't really feel anything lacking in the PFL compared to the UFC.

"I'm very happy with the decision. I'm very happy with the way the PFL has been treating me."

Santos - a former UFC title challenger who arguably defeated Valentina Shevchenko in their 2022 championship bout - will look to punch a ticket to the playoffs when she takes on Jena Bishop at PFL 4 on Thursday night in Uncasville, Connecticut.

The quick turnaround between fights - and having a precise schedule ahead of time - is one of the things Santos likes about competing under the PFL banner.

"There is a difference with how we keep our lifestyles when you have a fight booked and when you don't," Santos said. "Just knowing that, 'OK, I win this one, and I'm probably gonna be fighting around this time,' it just gives us a better guideline for us to follow. Not knowing when you're fighting, or maybe finding out that you have a fight in six weeks, I don't think you can be at 100% when fights are springing up like that."

Santos, who's from Brazil, fought in her home country just once while in the UFC. It was a split-decision loss in her 2019 debut. The PFL has never held an event in Brazil, but the promotion has had a bigger focus on international shows since acquiring Bellator in 2023. Santos hopes Donn Davis and Co. consider heading south of the equator so she can get a long-awaited homecoming - and this time get her hand raised.

"It would be amazing," Santos said of fighting on a potential PFL Brazil card. "The PFL is getting good ground here in Brazil. They have a good TV deal. It's on the TV station that used to work with the UFC. I think they can put out a very interesting product here. And there are a lot of cities that are clamoring for something big. Maybe the PFL could be that."

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