BJ Penn is slimmed down and ready for his upcoming drop to featherweight, returning after a year-long hiatus from the sport.
He revealed his new look on Instagram, showcasing a much leaner looking Penn then we’ve become accustomed to.
Penn has made the weight cut in order to challenge longtime rival Frankie Edgar, who will coach opposite him on The Ultimate Fighter 19. This will be Penn’s second stint as a TUF coach, following Season 5 where he coached opposite Jens Pulver, defeating him by rear naked choke in the finale.
Season 19 will feature a mix of middleweight and light heavyweight contestants.
Penn has faced off against Frankie Edgar twice before, losing the lightweight title to him (and snapping an eight year winning streak) at UFC 112. They had an immediate rematch at UFC 118, with Edgar once again taking a unanimous decision victory.
To help him train for this rematch, Penn has returned to Nova Uniao and coach Andre Pederneiras, the man who gave him his jiu-jitsu black belt in 1999. He will be training alongside UFC interim bantamweight champ Renan Barao and featherweight champ Jose Aldo.
The 35-year old “Prodigy” is a 12 year veteran of the sport, and has competed in three other weight classes to date: lightweight, welterweight, and middleweight, holding UFC titles in two of those.