After BJ Penn’s seventh consecutive loss in May, Dana White vowed that we had seen the last of BJ Penn in the UFC Octagon. Two months later, Dana White confirmed that BJ Penn is set to make his return later this year against Nik Lentz. So what changed? (Transcript via MMA Fighting):
“Cause he terrorized me for freaking a week and wouldn’t stop texting me for three days straight,” White said at the UFC 240 post fight press conference. “Talked me into it. We have a deal now — win, lose or draw, this is BJ Penn’s last fight.
“I won’t give him another fight. It’s very clear between us that there won’t be another fight no matter what. If all you people who are concerned are doctors, give me a call. If you’re not, then mind your business.”
White did not clarify if the deal was that it would be Penn’s last fight in the UFC or if Penn assured he would never fight again elsewhere, but based on the few details White disclosed, it would seem that Penn has assured White of his retirement from the entire sport following his next fight:
“I’ve voiced my concerns. I’ve known BJ Penn since he was he was like 19 years old. BJ is going to do what BJ wants to do,” White stated. “I’ve had a very crazy relationship with him and his family for the last 20 years. BJ walked me through a million reasons why he needs this fight and why he has to have it. He talked me into it. You guys know me, when I’m in, I’m in and I’m going to do what I’m going to do. So we’re doing this.
“He’s promised me that win, lose or draw, he will retire after this fight. We’ll see if he keeps his promise.”
But regardless of if he fights again or not, one thing is guaranteed, BJ Penn has one final UFC fight remaining in his career, White assures:
“He won’t fight here though, that I can guarantee you,” White said. “We won’t be sitting here doing this again, that I promise you.”
Do you believe BJ Penn will fight again after his upcoming bout against Nik Lentz?