Former Bellator champion and 2021 PFL welterweight semifinalist Rory MacDonald is planning on a major comeback after a brief setback in his career; losing to Ray Cooper III in the PFL Playoffs and ending his first season with the league on a sour note.

MacDonald fell to Cooper by unanimous decision in the PFL welterweight semifinals, getting dominated on the ground and appearing unable to showcase his diverse striking in the fight. Cooper came out with plenty to prove and ultimately won the fight off of pure grit and toughness.

Many around the MMA community believed that MacDonald was the clear favorite to win the welterweight championship in his first PFL season, but he’ll have to wait until next season to get that chance. MacDonald sounded optimistic about his fighting future and plans on coming back as a stronger fighter after the experience of losing back-to-back outings.

“Happy to be home with my family after spending 6 weeks apart,” MacDonald posted on his Instagram. “Being away from them for that long really affected me & showed me how much we need to be together for me to be at my best.”

“I’ll be taking a few weeks off to enjoy relaxing at home with family and use the time to start planning my comeback for my 2nd season in [the PFL].”

MacDonald had quite the roller coaster ride in his first season with the PFL in 2021. After earning a dominant submission win over Curtis Millender to open up the regular season, he lost a controversial decision to Gleison Tibau in the regular-season finale before ultimately losing to the defending champion, Cooper in the opening round of the playoffs. MacDonald signed with the league after a long tenure in Bellator which included a reign as the promotion’s welterweight champion.

After an unfortunate end to his rookie season in the PFL, MacDonald will look to get back on track and prove to the rest of the league that he still has what it takes to be one of the PFL’s biggest stars.

Do you think Rory MacDonald is still an elite MMA fighter?