B.J. Penn is the former UFC lightweight champion and the former UFC welterweight champion, currently fighting at featherweight. Penn is a UFC Hall of Famer.
Move to Welterweight Edit
Penn most recently lost another dominant unanimous decision against Frank Edgar for the lightweight title.
He next made a relatively quick turnaround to head up to welterweight for the first time since January 2009 to fight a rubber match against former welterweight champion Matt Hughes. Just over half a minute into the round, Penn dropped Hughes with a right hand before finishing the unconscious former champion with punches on the mat, grabbing his second win in the rubber match and proving he was the better man.
Immediately after, Penn agreed to a fight with longtime welterweight contender Jon Fitch. The two veterans fought to a majority draw.
He was next set to fight an immediate rematch against Fitch. Fitch was quickly injured. Carlos Condit stepped in as a replacement. Penn was afterwards injured as well. He was replaced by Dong Hyun Kim.
Penn was next rumored to face former Strikeforce middleweight champion Jake Shields. Penn called Shields out on Twitter mere weeks after Shields fought for the welterweight belt.Penn was most recently in talks to face either Condit or Shields or fight in a rematch against Fitch. On July 12, he tweeted a message for them all. ""All 3 TOP WW contenders are challenging me and I dont even have a belt. lol (: Bring it on! I got 165lbs. of pressure for your jaw @jonfitchdotnet @danawhite @UFC @CarlosCondit @jakeshieldsajj."
Mere hours later, Penn and Condit agreed to fight. Unfortunately Condit later stepped in to replace Nick Diaz in a welterweight title bout against Georges St. Pierre. Diaz stepped in to replace Condit against Penn in late October 2011.
First Retirement Edit
Diaz defeated Penn via a bloody unanimous decision and after the fight, Penn retired. He stated that he couldn't come home to his daughters with a swollen right eye any more.
In spring 2012, Penn turned down a Strikeforce lightweight title fight with champion Gilbert Melendez and talked about returning from retirement to the UFC welterweight division.
Brief Return and Second Retirement Edit
Penn did return in December 2012, losing another bloody and dominant unanimous decision to prospect Rory MacDonald. Penn stated that he was taking time off from the sport again to think about his future.
Penn talked about using his time off in 2013 to decide whether he was going to retire or drop back down to lightweight for a few final fights. He acknowledged that he was very near the end of his career in any case.
He confirmed to be dropping down to lightweight by early 2014 and was called out by undefeated phenom Khabib Nurmagomedov. Penn continued to say throughout 2013 that he very well might be permanently retired from mixed martial arts.
Return at Featherweight and Third Retirement Edit
Instead Penn signed in mid-2013 to return at featherweight. He would coach the 19th season of TUF against rival Frank Edgar in which he would fight Edgar in a trilogy-ending war at 145 pounds. Penn was quoted as saying, even before the season began filming, that after defeating Edgar he would go after Jose Aldo's UFC featherweight title.
Instead Edgar dominated Penn en route to a bloody third round technical knockout and Penn retired from mixed martial arts afterwards.
Return Again Edit
A little under two years after his retirement Penn decided to return to the sport - again at featherweight. However, Penn's return was delayed after an investigation into criminal allegations made against him was launched.
After Penn was cleared of all charges, he was set to return versus Dennis Siver. Siver was unfortunately injured and replaced by a man who had been on the first season of TUF Penn had coached, Cole Miller. Unfortunately Penn was forced to pull out of the fight after he was flagged by USADA for the use of a medically-administered IV during a non-fight period, when the use of IV had been recently banned 365 days a year.
After Penn's suspension was up he signed to return against contender Ricardo Lamas. Penn was unfortunately injured and the fight was scrapped.
After recovering Penn then signed to fight rising young contender Yair Rodriguez, a matchup which made many fans uneasy and in which Penn was the justifiable underdog. Rodriguez proved the fans and oddmakers bitterly correct, brutally knocking Penn out early in the second round. Surely it was the sad end to a historic career.
Unfortunately Penn signed for another fight, another shot at fighting Dennis Siver.
- B.J. Penn vs. Din Thomas
- B.J. Penn vs. Caol Uno 1 - Penn knocked Caol Uno out within mere seconds in a victory reminiscent of the third round title defense against Sean Sherk years later.
- B.J. Penn vs. Jens Pulver 1 - The fight was for the UFC lightweight title with Jens Pulver defending. The fight was B.J.'s first loss.
- B.J. Penn vs. Matt Serra - The fight was at lightweight, and many felt the decision could have gone either way (it went to Penn).
- B.J. Penn vs. Caol Uno 2 - The fight was for the vacant UFC lightweight title which Jens Pulver had vacated. After the fight ended in a draw, the UFC lightweight division became nonexistent for a number of years.
- B.J. Penn vs. Takanori Gomi
- B.J. Penn vs. Duane Ludwig
- B.J. Penn vs. Rodrigo Gracie - The fight was at middleweight (185 lbs.) The fight was the first loss in Rodrigo Gracie's career.
- Lyoto Machida vs. B.J. Penn - The fight was at light-heavyweight (205 pounds) and Lyoto Machida came in for the fight even heavier than 205. Besides Mauricio Rua in both of his fights with Machida, Penn is considered the man who gave Machida the closest fight.
- B.J. Penn vs. Renzo Gracie - The fight was at middleweight (185 lbs.)
- Georges St. Pierre vs. B.J. Penn 1
- Matt Hughes vs. B.J. Penn 2 - The fight was for the UFC welterweight title with Matt Hughes defending.
- B.J. Penn vs. Jens Pulver 2 - The fight was the coach's battle of TUF 5.
- B.J. Penn vs. Joe Stevenson - For the vacant UFC lightweight title.
- B.J. Penn vs. Sean Sherk - Penn's first defense of the title.
- Georges St. Pierre vs. B.J. Penn 2 - The fight was for St. Pierre's welterweight title, defending against former welterweight champion and current lightweight champion Penn. The fight was marred afterwards by allegations from Penn that St. Pierre had used grease (Vaseline) to avoid Penn getting a hold of him on the ground, and allowing St. Pierre to pass his guard easily and land more punishment.
- B.J. Penn vs. Kenny Florian - The fight, in 2009, was for the UFC lightweight championship with Penn defending. The fight was Kenny Florian's second shot at the lightweight belt since his fight for the vacant belt with Sean Sherk in 2006.
- B.J. Penn vs. Diego Sanchez - The fight -- The Nightmare vs. The Prodigy -- was for the UFC lightweight championship with Penn defending. The fight was Diego Sanchez's last at lightweight, as he returned to welterweight after the humiliating and dominant loss. The fight was only the second fight in UFC history to feature a finish -- TKO due to a cut -- in the fifth round. The fight was the first time that Sanchez had been knocked down in his entire career. Sanchez did the 'YES' chant coming out.
- B.J. Penn vs. Frank Edgar 1 - The fight was for the UFC lightweight title with Penn defending. The fight was considered a controversial decision, but indeed Frank Edgar deserved the belt that he won and he became the number-one lightweight in the world with the victory. Nevertheless, for some reason an immediate rematch was granted to Penn. The fight also marked the first time that Penn had been taken down at lightweight in over six years.
- Frank Edgar vs. B.J. Penn 2 - The fight was for the UFC lightweight title with Frank Edgar defending. The fight was the last lightweight fight in the career of Penn.
- Jon Fitch vs. B.J. Penn - The two veterans fought to a majority draw.
- Nick Diaz vs. B.J. Penn - The fight was the return to the UFC for former Strikeforce welterweight champion Nick Diaz. B.J. Penn retired after the fight.
- Rory MacDonald vs. BJ Penn