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Thursday, 01/10/2013, 10:02 am

Exclusive: Firas Zahabi Invites BJ Penn to Come Train at Tri-Star


There’s never been any love lost between BJ Penn and Tri-Star Gym. From BJ’s battles with current UFC Welterweight Champion Georges St. Pierre to his last go round in the Octagon with Rory MacDonald at UFC on Fox 5 this past December. BJ even mentioned to us on BJPenn.Com Radio in November that one of the reasons he decided to take the fight against MacDonald was to try and gain a measure of revenge against Firas Zahabi and his crew.

BJ also made sure to let us know it wasn’t anything personal, he just wanted to show them they had yet to see the best BJ Penn. Unfortunately things didn’t go as planned and the much bigger, much younger and more athletic MacDonald handed Penn a very one-sided unanimous decision loss. It’s a loss that has many people wondering if we have seen the last of the former two-division UFC champion inside the Octagon.

Zahabi is well respected and trains some of the greatest fighters in the sport today. When he speaks people generally tend to listen to what he has to say. The 32-year-old Montreal native joined us on BJPenn.Com Radio last night and we asked him what he thought about BJ and a potential return to the lightweight division.

“I think he’s a phenomenal fighter, I think he has a lot that he can still do,” Zahabi said. “I really think he can be where he used to be. I think he can make it back there. I’d love for him to come to Tri-Star and train with us and see what we do. We can have an exchange of ideas and how we could mutually benefit from such an experience. I really think he has a lot left in him, but that’s up to him. He has nothing to prove, he’s done everything in this sport and if he fights it’s for his own personal enjoyment and I would encourage him. If he doesn’t want to fight I don’t think he has anything to prove, he’s done it all so it’s really up to him and what he feels he wants to do.”

Listen to it for yourself and determine whether or not he is being sincere or if it would make sense for BJ to take a trip north and talk shop with Zahabi. One thing for sure is the majority of MMA fans and his fellow fighters aren’t ready to see BJ hang up his gloves just yet. Regardless of what he decides his place in MMA history is cemented and he will always be a legend.




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31 Responses to “Exclusive: Firas Zahabi Invites BJ Penn to Come Train at Tri-Star”

  1. mean170 says:

    I want to see BJ back at 155. As much as I dislike tristar they would have him training like he was when he was with the Marinovich camp. BJ at 155 is still near the top of 155ers.

  2. xhoochiex says:

    Honestly BJ going there wouldn’t be a bad idea but I’m not for it. I do agree BJ needs a better camp but I’ve always been saying BJ should go to Blackhouse. Anderson loves him so much and would love for him to go there lol
    And I honestly think it would benefit him so much

    But point is I think BJ needs better camp

  3. OakcliffTopdog says:

    Do what your heart tells you to do BJ. You are and always will be one of the greatest ever. Much blessings to you and your family.

  4. rang says:

    Bj is too lazy to train well. LW gatekeeper, at his best…

  5. dss says:

    I think I speak for the majority of BJ Penn fans when I say that BJ needs to leave his camp and the local boys. Go try Blackzillians, Xtreme Couture, Tri Star, even Greg Jackson just for one fight. His camp and old crew doesn’t cut it any more. If BJ is going to fight again, he needs to leave Hawaii, go train at the RVCA centre again. PLEASE BJ. Give it one try. There is a reason why people keep criticizing his camps because it’s always full of B-level guys where BJ is A-level. How can he get better when he’s the best guy in the crew??!??!?!?!

  6. Casey says:

    Do it BJ! Train at Tristar, drop to 155 and get another title!

  7. Derryck says:

    Do it! Seek out all your talent and make it happen! Become the well rounded fighter you were meant to be and push yourself to excel beyond your talent! Everyone wants to see you at your best!

  8. jeramy says:

    stfu bro.. u are annoying gotta be kidding noting u fked up your computer. u rly did.. u are annoying jc stfu

  9. matt giberson says:

    I am Bj’s bigges fan for sure…..but i hate to say it “if you cant beat em, join em”

  10. the biz says:

    dont do it bj. u cant trust those “canadians”

  11. Magoo says:

    Lol….I mentioned this in another post, every BJ fan probably thought I was wacked! Prolly still do, but this would be the best career move of his life! There’s no doubt in my mind with Chaimburg as his nutritionist,Zahabi as his trainer,Danaher jitz coach and guys like St Pierre and Mcdonald and the rest of the guys at Tristar to train with,BJ would be better then he ever was before! U talked about where ur winning streak was BJ….it’s right there in Montreal! I believe with u training there, you could win that LW title on go out on top a champion that you really should be!

  12. Jay Unidos says:

    It’s hard to argue with Tristar’s success, which is real and documented. You could ignore it, like some people continue to ignore the results from BJ’s camps with Marv & Gary Marinovich, but the facts speak for themselves.

  13. RVCA Man says:

    I watched the last Rocky Movie BJ and thought about you. The scene when Rocky tells his son, “it ain’t about how hard you hit, its about how har you can get hit and keep moving forward, how much you can take and keep moving forward, THATS HOW WINNING IS DONE” BJ you epitomize this statement! You reminded me of Rocky against Diaz and McDonald. Lets go BJ one more run at 155!

  14. Bob'O says:

    I can’t believe what I am about to say, but I think BJ should do it and make another run for the 155 title. I think it would be a positive decision that would end up cementing his Legacy even more than it already is.

    The influence, the confidence, the change of view could do wonders. Sometimes you gotta make drastic changes in order to be one with universal law again. Whatever he decides, I wish BJ the best. ~Bob’O

  15. Dddddddd says:

    This is one of the first things intriguing enough for me to even want to comment in a min. The level of heart Bjs shown lately is the same as his physical attributes used to be before the hybrids of the new norm. I don’t believe Tristar has a fighter with Bjs heart or jaw but they bring out the goods in all the areas it seems BJ needs to stay relevant at the level he desires. Damn they need him as bad as he needs them

  16. Thom says:

    It oculd only help. BJ at 155 working at tri-star would actually be a good thing as much as hardcore fans will hate even thinking about this. That being said this will NEVER happen, trust me.

  17. josh mitchell says:

    Seeing GSP corner BJ in a fight would means the Mayans were right and were already dead.

  18. Darwin says:

    Go for it BJ! Take the offer!

  19. realist says:

    BJ, I would accept his offer, please let yourself reach the true potential of your skills, staying in Hawaii won’t work.

    You know why GSP is so good? He trains with the best at every discipline. He trains with the best Muay Thai fighter, he trains with some of the best BJJ, he trains with the best wrestlers, he trains with actual boxers. Thats how you win BJ by training like a champion and not getting by on just RAW Talent. PLEASE BJ for the Love of God and your Legacy. SUCK UP YOUR PRIDE and DO IT!!!!!!

  20. Rvca man says:

    Firas and all of tri star can suck a d**k! U don’t need them bj.. But perhaps entertain the idea of another camp…I wish Fitch wasn’t such a hater or I would love 2 c u back at AKA… much love BJ

    • allmightysandman says:

      LMAO…you are a hater and if you won’t take your blinders off to see and admit that this would be an amazing “career-move” then your hate is more important to you than seeing BJ be the best he can be…which again proves you are a hater not a fan….big difference.

    • grenade says:

      You comment on Fitch on being a hater, but you’re a
      hater for your comments on Firas and Tri-Star. With the wins Tri-Star has over BJ, Firas doesn’t need to be respectful or accommodating towards BJ. Especially the comments BJ has made in the past. But Firas understands that BJ has something left to contribute if decides to continue fighting. However, that starts with a new camp. And this opinion is shared by many in the MMA community.
      If BJ doesn’t change his training camp he needs to retire. Nobody wants to see him being use as a pinata. I will always watch him fight but it’s honestly getting harder to.

  21. Twayne says:

    Da’ Champ has it all going for him already. Blessed with a beautiful family, owns several buisnesses, future H.O.F’er, not to mention he lives in the island paradise. Firas said himself, BJ has done it all in the sport, he has nothing to prove. So let the man rest! I’ll always support BJ to da’ fullest. I’d pay to watch him fight anyone, any weight class. BJ goes down as one of the G.O.A.Ts in my book. If he wants to hang it up, I support that to. At least i can say, I lived in the era of Da’ “PRODIGY”. I witnessed one of the greatest fighters of all time in my lifetime. Imua BJ!


  22. Civilian says:

    BJ’s 2 biggest problems have been conditioning and dealing with strong wrestlers. Tristar is known for having both of those factors covered in their training ethic so BJ would benefit hugely in that regard. I think it could be a great move… plus dropping down back to 155.

  23. DBKlein69 says:

    i would love to see bj fight after a camp at tri-star. but it’s alot easier said than done when u dont have little kids at home that u would have to leave for months in order to do it. family first. u all saw how sad bj is about how fast his daughter is growing up. it happens in the blink of an eye. some things just aren’t worth missing out on.

  24. […] a phenomenal fighter, I think he has a lot that he can still do,? Zahabi said in an interview with “I really think he can be where he used to be. I think he can make it back there. I’d […]

  25. Sakib2212 says:

    If Bj goes tri star it would be a treat for all mma fans to show this is a true sportship sport, go for it bj see what thay can do for you you did it with matt huges
    I think you would come out a new bj penn 6.0!!!!! And alot of respect to zahabi to give you an offer like that!

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