It’s clear that Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Hall of Famer B.J. Penn is not ready to hang up his gloves. After getting bulldozed by Frankie Edgar in their third encounter, Penn decided to retire. Less than three years later, “The Prodigy” is back in the game.
Penn will meet rising featherweight Yair Rodriguez inside the Talking Stick Resort Arena in Phoenix, Arizona. The two will headline the next UFC Fight Night event this Sunday night (Jan. 15). The main card will be airing on FOX Sports 1 (FS1) at 10 p.m. ET.
For Penn, the decision to come back wasn’t difficult. The former two-division champion said he had an itch to put the gloves back on and prepare for another battle in a new video on the official YouTube page of the UFC:
“I miss being in the ring. It’s the only thing that can like [give me] that kind of excitement and that kind of feeling and that’s it. It’s the only way you can get it.”
“The Prodigy” still hasn’t lost sight of trying to capture the 145-pound title. Penn has a long ladder to climb for that to happen, but at this time, he’s just happy to return to the Octagon.
“I really wanna complete a goal of getting a third title, but I just love it [fighting] man. I love this and there’s just so many things for me. It’s my identity, I can make an honest living. I just have too much pros and not enough cons to walk away.”
UFC President Dana White certainly didn’t give “The Prodigy” an easy return fight. Penn wouldn’t have it any other way.
“When Dana offered me this fight I said, ‘perfect.’ This is the kind of fight that I want and I want to fight someone in the top. That’s all I’ve ever known was fighting the best guys.”