When Stevie Ray returns at the PFL 2022 Championship this November, he’ll be fighting someone other than Anthony Pettis for a change.
Not that back-to-back fights against the former WEC and UFC lightweight champion bothered Ray, he told Cageside Press in a recent exclusive interview.
“I enjoyed fighting Pettis twice,” said Scotland’s Ray (25-1), who will face Olivier Aubin-Mercier in the million dollar final on November 25. “I liked it. I got a chance to show everybody that I could beat him not only once, but twice. But it’s cool to get a new opponent.”
It wasn’t a perfect season for Ray, who returned from retirement to join the PFL’s 2022 season. He lost his first fight back, against Alex Martinez, and had to claw his way back into the mix care of the Pettis wins.
“That was my first fight back after a two and a half year layoff. Dropped that one, didn’t perform too great. Then I got a second chance against Pettis,” Ray observed. “The way I seen it, I had nothing to lose. I was fighting the superstar, he was the big guy, the big name. So I just seen it as an opportunity, nothing to lose.”
Of course, Ray submitted Petts, then “got an immediate rematch, beat him again, and here we are,” he noted. The rest, as they say, is history.
Opposite Stevie Ray on the PFL’s 2022 Championship card in New York City is Canadian Olivier Aubin-Mercier. “I believe I can stop him. He’s never been stopped, but again, he’s never fought Stevie Ray,” the Scottish fighter said of the match-up. “I know I’m dangerous, and I can stop him. But that being said, he is tough. To be honest, I’ll take anything. I’ll take a f*cking decision win, knockout, or submission. I know I can win all of those three. I’ll be bringing it, and I’ll take anyone.”
With the PFL having touched down in England this year, and European expansion on the horizon, Ray also hopes that he might fight at home for the promotion some day.
“I’d like to bring PFL to Scotland just so PFL can see how crazy the Scots are.”
Watch our full interview with PFL lightweight Stevie Ray above. The PFL 2022 Championship takes place on November 25, 2022 at the Hulu Theater in New York, NY.