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Wednesday, 06/05/2013, 10:47 am

Khabib Nurmagomedov Wants to Welcome BJ Penn Back to Lightweight

It didn’t take long for prospective challengers to line-up in the hopes of facing a returning legend.

Amidst reports that former UFC Welterweight and Lightweight Champion BJ “The Prodigy” Penn may not yet be ready to close the book on his storied career in mixed martial arts, a new challenge presented itself in the form of undefeated Russian fighter Khabib “The Eagle” Nurmagomedov.

With Penn’s hypothetical return to the Octagon said to be at 155 pounds-where he reigned as champion from January 2008 to April 2010- Nurmagomedov took to Twitter this morning to send out a challenge to the 34 year-old native of Hilo, HI:


It has been nearly six months since we’ve seen Penn in the Octagon, where he dropped a lopsided decision to Rory MacDonald back in December at UFC on FOX 5. The fight, which took place at 170 pounds, was Penn’s fourth since moving back to welterweight in November of 2010 for his rubber match with Matt Hughes. Since then, Penn has gone just 1-2-1 as a welterweight with many fans clamoring for his return to the lightweight division; a return that Nurmagomedov, who most recently bested Abel Trujillo at UFC 160, would be much obliged to be a part of.

A Judo black belt and Combat Sambo World Champion, Nurmagomedov has amassed a 20-0 MMA record since his professional debut in September 2008; nearly four months prior in May of that same year, Penn had just defeated Sean Sherk to defend his newly-won UFC Lightweight title. Interestingly enough, the Russian also trains at the American Kickboxing Academy in San Jose, CA where a precocious, young Penn got his start in professional mixed martial arts under Javier Mendez and “Crazy” Bob Cook.

What do you think, Penn Nation? Does “The Prodigy” have one last go-round at 155, and is Khabib Nurmagomedov the right man to stand opposite him in the Octagon? Leave us your comments!

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