Recently, the MMA world has been wondering what it will take to get BJ Penn out of retirement and back inside the UFC cage. Every attempt that Zuffa made to bring the former lightweight and welterweight champ back was declined, as Penn was seemingly happy spending time with his family. Even Josh Koscheck was unable to draw the Hawaiian out.
Well, it appears that it just took the right fight and the right fighter to motivate Penn. Rory MacDonald recently stated that he wanted to face Penn at UFC 152 in Toronto. His intentions are seemingly pure, as he wants to face the legend before he hits the end of his career.
Penn has apparently accepted the challenge as he released a short statement via his personal Website saying, "Rory, I accept your challenge."
The UFC has yet to confirm the fight, but it is expected that this will be booked. The UFC is in dire need of main-event-caliber fighters, and Penn still has a name in the industry. The fight also makes sense from a rankings perspective, as Rory is currently in need of a big-name win to propel himself into title contention.
Personally, I love this fight. I, like many, believe that Rory is the future of the division. A matchup with BJ Penn will provide a look at the development of the young Canadian. It's likely that Penn won't continue to fight much longer, so it's best to use his name to build future stars before he leaves the sport permanently.
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