B.J. Penn Officially Released From His UFC Contract
By Ross Markey
Former UFC welterweight and lightweight best ‘The Prodigy’ B.J. Penn has been officially released by the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
Dana White confirmed the news yesterday evening with Yahoo Sports. Penn, who was rumoured to meet Nik Lentz at UFC 245 in December, has been involved in two separate street fight altercations in previous months, and has failed to earn a victory in any of his last eight Octagon appearances.
The Hawaiian Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu ace ended a three year hiatus from active competition in 2017, returning against Mexican striker Yair Rodriguez in a featherweight meeting. With a stoppage loss to Rodriguez followed by a majority decision loss to Dennis Siver, Penn returned to lightweight.
Meeting fellow grappler Ryan Hall, the 40-year-old was submitted via a heel hook in the opening round. A UFC 237 appearance against Clay Guida resulted in Penn’s seventh straight promotional defeat.
With a professional career spanning eighteen years, Penn has twice achieved champion status in the UFC, claiming the 170-pound and 155-pound title. The long time Jackson-Wink MMA staple holds career highlight victories over Matt Hughes, Sean Sherk, Joe Stevenson, Matt Serra, Diego Sanchez, Kenny Florian and Takanori Gomi to name a few.
At this time, it is unknown whether Penn will test free agency or permanently hang up his gloves.