Hilo’s Penn Returning to Octagon as Featherweight Against Edgar
BJ Penn’s days in an Ultimate Fighting Championship octagon are not over yet.
The UFC announced Wednesday that Penn will face familiar foe Frankie Edgar next year in the 145-pound featherweight class. Both men will also coach against each other in the nineteenth season of the popular television series “The Ultimate Fighter,” which airs on Fox Sports 1.
Via Twitter, “UFC Tonight,” a UFC news and information show that airs on Fox Sports 1, gave information on Penn’s return.
Penn has not been victorious since his 21-second knockout of Matt Hughes at UFC 123 on Nov. 20, 2012. Since that win, he battled to a draw against Jon Fitch in the main event of UFC 127, lost by decision to Nick Diaz in the headlining bout of UFC 137, and lost by unanimous decision to Rory MacDonald at UFC on Fox 5 last December.
Penn retired after his loss to Diaz, but came back in response to a challenge from MacDonald. After his last loss, Penn didn’t signal an end to his career, but UFC boss Dana White called for his retirement, saying in the post-match press conference that “he has nothing left to prove to anybody, and everybody loves him. You heard the arena here tonight. I’d like to see BJ retire.”
Edgar, who currently holds a 16-4 record, has had Penn’s number. The New Jersey native defeated “The Prodigy” twice by unanimous decision in a span of four and a half months in 2010. Both of those bouts were contested in the lightweight division.
Penn has fought in several different weight classes, including the lightweight, welterweight, and middleweight divisions. The Hilo native will turn 35 in December and compete at the featherweight level for the first time.
UFC says that taping for “The Ultimate Fighter” will begin later this year. The show will begin airing in April of next year, according to “UFC Tonight.”
The bout between both coaches will happen at a date yet to be determined.