Schulte won by unanimous decision against Manfio, but it was not recognised as the PFL opted to promote Shane Burgos instead.
The suspension not only dashes Schulte’s hopes of competing in the 2023 PFL playoffs but also jeopardizes his chance to win the coveted $1 million prize.
Schulte took to Twitter, urging former UFC champion Francis Ngannou, now a member of the PFL Athlete Advisory Board, to weigh in on the decision.
Schulte questioned the fairness of the PFL’s choice and implored Ngannou, known for championing fighter rights, to share his perspective.
@francis_ngannou @MMAJunkie @combate @MMAFighting @PFLMMA @espn @RonnyMarkes @AgFight @junior_cigano @AnaHissa @guicruzzz @Adrianoreporter @SPonzinibbioMMA @ThiagoMoisesMMA @AmericanTopTeam @sextoroundmma @mmahoje_ @blackbeltmma1 @MMAUNCENSORED1 @portaldovt @OnPointMMA pic.twitter.com/bMS1VufWS1
— Natan' Schulte (@NatanSchulte) June 25, 2023
In addition, Brian Butler, manager of Raush Manfio, expressed his dissatisfaction with the PFL’s decision and its impact on his fighter.
Butler criticized the subjective nature of the PFL’s ruling, particularly considering the promotion’s emphasis on fighter advocacy.
“To make a subjective decision like this from a promoter that stakes its claim in fighter advocacy is just a bad look, in my opinion. Judges make bad calls all the time with less repercussion.
“Raush and Natan are best friends and have been exclusive training partners for each other for years…Our client got half his pay and zero points to move forward in the tournament. This is distasteful and unnecessary,” Butler
As the MMA community closely follows developments, the outcome of this situation will undoubtedly leave a lasting impact on the PFL’s reputation and the fighters involved.