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BJ Penn Comes Out of Semi-Retirement to Fight Rory MacDonald

(Whether you’re a Muay Thai fan or a foot-fetishist, that is one sexy kick.)

When BJ Penn turned down fights against Gilbert Melendez and Josh Koscheck, we figured it was because he was holding out for…well, a fourth fight against Matt Hughes, if you want to get specific. You know how it is with these old legends. They take a couple losses to younger contenders, and all of a sudden they’ll only consider fights that “make sense,” which usually means big-name opponents who are also on the downside of their careers.

In other words, we just assumed that Penn felt Melendez and Koscheck were too dangerous, and that facing either of them could be harmful to his legacy. So it comes as a bit of a surprise that Penn has now accepted a fight against young welterweight killer Rory MacDonald, who is not a superstar, but is one of the most dangerous sons-of-bitches in the UFC.

During an appearance on The MMA Hour earlier this week, MacDonald expressed his desire to face the Prodigy before it’s too late: “That’s a guy I really want to fight. I respect him a lot. He’s a legend and I think it’d be a really good matchup for me to have that fight in Toronto…I’d love the opportunity to fight a guy I’ve looked up to for a long time and watched since I’ve been a young kid, so we’ll see if he accepts…how many opportunities am I going to get to fight a guy like BJ after he’s gone?

Rory’s offer spurred BJ Penn to make a brief statement on his website: “Rory, I accept your challenge!”

The fight would likely take place at UFC 152, September 22nd in Toronto. MacDonald has won his last three fights in dominating fashion, scoring a unanimous decision win over Nate Diaz at UFC 129, then notching TKO wins over Mike Pyle and Che Mills. The GSP protege is still just 22 years old and would take a large step in the public consciousness with a beatdown of Penn. Does anybody think BJ can stop that from happening?

Cagepotato Comments

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linzhancu- June 7, 2012 at 10:51 am
Georgianna Yanez- June 7, 2012 at 4:29 am
They take a couple losses to younger contenders, and all of a sudden they’ll only consider fights that “make sense,” which usually means big-name opponents who are also on the downside of their careers.
Georgianna Yanez- June 7, 2012 at 3:30 am
Wonder if bj would have more success in his last few fights using jj instead of boxing so much though.
Mmaelite- June 7, 2012 at 12:24 am
I would love love love to see this fight. Would care less to see kos but Gil would be dope fight too. Wonder if bj would have more success in his last few fights using jj instead of boxing so much though.
Mir please break Brocks neck- June 7, 2012 at 12:24 am
A few things to say here..... Ok... Rory is VERY dangerous....and THIS match-up WILL sell PPV's. BJ vs Hughes (again)?.... I could care less. IF, IF, IF BJ can win this.... he would be thrust back into the limelight... and I'd love to see it! I love BJ. But at the same time...Rory is NO joke. Other than his obviously similar resemblance to Marilyn Manson (in MY opinion, anyways).....this guy is a fricken' killer. IF Rory's wins.... he should be thrust into title contention. If BJ wins.... he should shake up a division or 2 and eff-up 2-3 fighters within the next 365 days. Id love to see him in the ring more! Im just a fan of MMA and would look forward to all these guys....they are all at the top of the heap in my book! While Im here....FRANK MIR FOR PRESIDENT!!!!!
Get Off Me- June 6, 2012 at 6:12 pm
It's gonna be Fitch/Penn rd.3 from the get go.WTF BJ?!
RearNakedSpoon- June 6, 2012 at 4:55 pm
Rory McDonald, baddest man on the planet.
soul_of-a_lion- June 6, 2012 at 1:37 pm
The_Dead_Cow is right, mcdonald in under 4 rds. Hell let mcdonald get his revenge on condit and then let condit fight bj.But Dana if you happen to read this ( and we know you do) penn vs. melendez, we know you have the money, make it happen, even if its a catch weight of 162lbs
intercept440- June 6, 2012 at 12:36 pm
the only win penn gets out of this, is still being alive after he loses
towelie- June 6, 2012 at 12:22 pm
Penn by KO.
KarmaAteMyCat- June 6, 2012 at 11:58 am
Everyone is counting BJ Penn out. How sad. I mean come on guys he's Bj Penn it's not like we're discussing Tank Abbot this dude has a legit chance in this fight. It'll come down to basically a couple minute details one of which is does Rory want to lay on BJ Penn or fight him. Simple question we'll see I guess.
Todd M- June 6, 2012 at 8:30 pm
Agreed, this is a tough fight for BJ but he should never be counted out.
smellypiratehooker- June 6, 2012 at 11:54 am
Nice to see Rory being...proactive
dbl11- June 6, 2012 at 3:28 pm
thumbs up for acne references?
smellypiratehooker- June 6, 2012 at 11:50 am
See this make sense to me. If he wins, he beat the guy that alot of people believe to be the future of the welterweight division. If he loses, his heart wasn't really in it anymore to train hard to beat a oversized, greased up, roid cheater. Cause BJ has never made excuses for loses in the past.
The_Dead_Cow- June 6, 2012 at 10:54 am
I think the Melendez fight would have been best for Penn, at least it was one he could have won.
HardKnockLife- June 6, 2012 at 8:44 am
Timing of this all seems a little suspect to me...
And I really hope the UFC doesn't think this is good enough to headline the card in Toronto, I don't want to see BJ beat up for 4 rounds before his brother steps in.
The12ozCurls- June 6, 2012 at 8:31 am
Is it just me or does this reek of BJ still trying to get back at GSP? Since BJ knows he can't beat GSP, I gotta believe that this is BJ's only other way of trying to give Georges the middle finger. Get over it BJ, you should have takin the easier fight with Koscheck.
Fried Taco- June 6, 2012 at 7:31 am
I see BJ taking Rory's back, and then he will start popping those zits.
bgoldstein- June 6, 2012 at 7:27 am
@Redmoose: Ugh, thanks for the catch...I wrote this post pre-coffee.
(And Maverick for the other catch. I really picked the wrong week to stop sniffing glue.)

wizzlef- June 6, 2012 at 7:05 am
this seems like its pretty much going to be a replay of gsp penn 2 except for only 3 rounds
Redmoose- June 6, 2012 at 7:03 am
get your life together cagepotato. you mention rory beating the wrong diaz in your article. telling the diaz brothers apart is day one shit. you wouldnt last a second in the 209.
Fletch the V Stretch- June 6, 2012 at 6:45 am
RIP BJ PENN. I hate to be the one who breaks the bad news to BJ Penn huggers (I am also a big fan) but he is doing to get absolutely dominated in every sense of the word, every second of every round, in every aspect of MMA. He will certainly retire after this thrashing he is going to receive. This will be the most lopsided fight since GSP Penn 2.
The12ozCurls- June 6, 2012 at 7:58 am
Didn't I call for Rory VS BJ about 2 or 3 weeks ago?
Answer: Yes I did.