B.J. Penn has not won a fight in almost three years. | Photo: Dave Mandel/Sherdog.com
Is B.J. Penn overrated? The question seems to arise every so often.
Penn is one of only two men -- Randy Couture is the other -- to have held Ultimate Fighting Championship titles in more than one weight class, but his career has been marked by maddening inconsistency and a perceived lack of dedication. The Hawaiian will return to the MMA scene in January, when he coaches opposite Frankie Edgar on Season 19 of “The Ultimate Fighter” reality series.
After the show wraps, “The Prodigy” will complete his trilogy with Edgar, as he tests the waters at 145 pounds for the first time. Skepticism abounds. Penn, who turns 35 in December, lost consecutive decisions to “The Answer” at UFC 112 and UFC 118 in 2010. The first, which cost him the lightweight championship, was considered controversial; the second was not.
Penn last fought at UFC on Fox 5 in December, when he dropped a lopsided verdict to surging Canadian Rory MacDonald at 170 pounds. The 34-year-old has been outstruck by a staggering 382-160 count by his last two opponents and has not tasted victory since he knocked out hall of famer and longtime rival Matt Hughes in 21 seconds back in November 2010.
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