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Dana White Says he Tried to Make Penn vs. Melendez Happen, And That Penn Will Return at 170lbs

(Sadly, the fight between Penn and Jon Fitch was ruled a draw and the puppy was left without a home)

UFC President Dana White continues to say that future hall of famer BJ Penn will indeed return to the Octagon, despite Penn’s coyness. But Thursday, White provided more details to MMA Junkie on what weight the pound for pound great will fight at, and revealed that Penn declined a bout with Strikeforce champ Gilbert Melendez.

“I tried to do [Melendez vs. Penn], but it was at the time when B.J. was like, ‘Yeah, I’m not fighting for a while,’” White told Junkie.

Apparently, he didn’t say if that match up would have meant Penn going to Strikeforce or Melendez going to the UFC.

White seems to think that Penn will be back at welterweight. “I’m done with telling him where to go as far as weight goes,” White said. “The guy’s handled himself in both weight divisions, and if he wants to come back at 170 – plus you get to an age where cutting down to 155 just doesn’t make sense anymore.”

Penn announced that he was retiring after losing to Nick Diaz last October. While White is certain that Penn will return, he says he isn’t rushing the former champ.

“Whenever he’s ready,” White said. “That’s up to him. Whenever he’s ready. I don’t ever push guys. Guys know when they’re ready. Guys know when they want to come back.”

Read the full article here. What do you guys think? Should Penn return? Should it happen at welterweight, and when will Melendez stop getting the Strikeforce shaft?

- Elias Cepeda

Cagepotato Comments

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linzhanbt- May 6, 2012 at 9:26 am
Lesnarischamp- May 4, 2012 at 7:28 pm
nobody wants to see Penn at WW.
towelie- May 4, 2012 at 3:41 pm
Fuck that. If Frankie is scared, let BJ cut to FW and take Aldo on. Or a catch weight fight for no belt. At this point just let him setup legendary fights. How about an open weight fight so he can rematch Lyoto?
towelie- May 4, 2012 at 10:24 am
eatthecage- May 4, 2012 at 10:24 am
At his age, Penn's success would be heavily dependant on how serious he takes training camp. Fighting at 170 would suggest that he isn't too serious. The days of coming in chubby and pulling off the win are behind him. Fighting @ 170 = Penn getting gassed by end of round 2 and retirement FOR REAL.