‘The Prodigy’ BJ Penn’s latest comeback has hit yet another stumbling block after he was forced out of next weekend’s UFC Fight Night 97 headliner against Ricardo Lamas due to an injury.
At the moment it’s not known how bad the 37 year-old’s injury is, or whether the UFC will have enough time left before the October 15th event in Manila to find a new opponent to face Lamas.
Without Penn’s star power, The UFN 97 event will struggle to produce a worthy headliner, with the co-main event featuring a heavyweight fight between Derrick Lewis and Marcin Tybura.
As for Penn, this is just another setback to add to the ever-growing list, having recently finished serving a 6-month suspension for using an IV, which nixed his first attempt to come out of retirement earlier in the year.
At that point Penn had been lined up against fellow veteran Dennis Siver, though he pulled out injured and was later replaced by Cole Miller, before ‘The Prodigy’s’ illegal use of an IV scrapped the bout altogether.
Some eyebrows were then raised when it was announced that Penn would now be fighting Lamas in the Philippines, with the current No.4 ranked featherweight contender and former title contender seeming like a particularly tricky fight for the Hawaiian’s first fight in two and a half years.
With that in mind, it may be something of a blessing in disguise if Penn’s injury leads to him being paired up with a different, and perhaps slightly less daunting opponent, when he does finally make it back to the Octagon – assuming his injury isn’t serious enough to send him back into retirement.