BJ Penn has a new opponent lined up for his comeback fight, with rumors suggesting that he’ll now fight Ricardo Lamas in the main event of UFC Fight Night 97, which is scheduled to take place in the Philippines on October 15th.
Penn has already attempted to make his return to the Octagon this year, having originally been scheduled to fight Dennis Siver at UFC 199 back in June, with Cole Miller later stepping in as a late replacement when Siver pulled out due to an injury.
However, that fight didn’t materialize as Penn was pulled from the event after admitting to have used an IV drip, a practice which had recently been banned by USADA.
That led to the 37 year-old being handed a six month suspension, but despite the setback Penn had vowed that it wouldn’t put him off returning to the sport, and it looks like that is indeed the case.
Of the three opponents that ‘The Prodigy’ has been lined up to face this year, Lamas is undoubtedly the toughest test, though the 34 year-old former 145lb title contender has lost two of his last three fights.
Those defeats came against two of the division’s leading contenders however, in Max Holloway and Chad Mendes, and he holds an overall 7-3 record in the UFC to date.
As for Penn, the former lightweight and welterweight champion and UFC hall-of-famer’s recent record does not make for good reading, having won just once in his last six fights.
In all fairness though, three of those losses came to just one man, Frankie Edgar, with the other two coming at welterweight against Nick Diaz and Rory MacDonald, while he also fought to a draw with Jon Fitch during that period.
It’s now been six years since Penn last tasted victory in the Octagon, and having been out of action for over two years, fighting the current No.4 featherweight contender seems like a tall order, but knowing ‘The Prodigy’, he wouldn’t have it any other way.