After retiring after a loss to Nick Diaz at UFC 137, BJ Penn retired from the UFC. He is one of only two men to hold a title in two different weight classes and was one of the most dominant lightweights of all time. While he failed to live up to “The Prodigy” he is still one of the most well known and successful UFC fighters and is now ready to return. Dana White said that if Penn returns it will most likely be at welterweight, but assuming he could return to lightweight let’s view some possible fights for him upon his return.
If the UFC truly wants to see how good Melendez is a fight against BJ Penn could give them the answer. Penn was a dominant champ and if he wants the opportunity to hold another belt, moving to Strikeforce could be the answer. This fight would allow us to see if Penn can still be an elite fighter and whether Melendez is a top ranked lightweight.
Assuming Diaz wants to take a fight while Bendo and Edgar settle their score a fight with Penn could be perfect. The elder Diaz already defeated Penn, but with Penn at his more natural weight this could be an interesting fight. This is another fight that would allow us to see where both Diaz and Penn are in the lightweight division and a win for Penn would definitely get him back into top lightweight status. If Penn decides he wants to come back soon, this could be a perfectly timed fight for both fighters.
Why not? Both are coming off losses, both are jiu-jitsu experts and Lauzon was on Penn’s team during The Ultimate Fighter. It’s a bout that would get both back on track and Lauzon is known for taking down big names. He defeated Jens Pulver in his UFC debut and recently derailed Melvin Guillard’s title chances. Penn could be another name to add to the list.
Koscheck is coming off a loss against Johny Hendricks and is in a sort of limbo in the welterweight division. A fight against Penn would give him a big name opponent and pay day and would be a fun fight. It’s the classic wrestler vs. jiu-jitsu match up and one that all fans would love to see.
They fought to a draw last fight and it was a great fight. While fans may not like it because of Fitch’s fight style it would be nice to figure out a winner. Neither is near a title shot, so this fight is one that could happen and wouldn’t really ruin any title implications. This could be a good match up on a free card or the co-main event of a PPV card. Fitch isn’t scheduled to fight anyone, so this is a definite possibility.
Obviously all of these fights depend on whether or not Penn comes back, but if he does there are plenty of fights available for him.