FanPost

BJ Penn Could Defeat Frankie Edgar

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B.J. Penn is one of the most polarizing fighters in Mixed Martial Arts history. Depending on who you ask he is either the greatest lightweight of all time, an overrated waste of talent, a washed up has been who just can't hang up the gloves or some combination of the three.

I'm sure most of you have an opinion... and a rather passionate one at that. People will click on this article and not read it, scroll to the bottom and write nothing but negative things about the delusion of B.J. Penn's fans, including this one.

But I'm hoping you will read this. And let me clarify something:

I am well aware that B.J. Penn is 35 years old and is shopworn after a 12 year MMA career.

I know that he is 1-4-1 since 2010 and that he lost twice to the very man he is set to face sometime next year.

His last two fights were difficult to watch for many B.J. fans, particularly him being soundly outclassed by the younger, larger and more well rounded Rory MacDonald.

I am also aware of the... joke that is B.J.'s preparation for fights. "He's motivated." "This will be the best Penn ever!" "We will see the old B.J."

I'm sure I'm missing something somewhere.

Because I believe in showcasing some facts when I write something on this site, despite this being primarily an opinion piece.

This is B.J. Penn's career:

FIGHTER Wins Loss Draw WIN % OF FIGHTS FINISH % OF FIGHTS (T)KO SUB UFC STRIKING ACC: 51%
BJ PENN 16 9 2 59.25% 81.25% 7 6 UFC STRIKING DEF: 57%
LIGHTWEIGHT RECORD 11 3 1 73.33% 90.90% 6 4 UFC TAKEDOWN ACC: 55%
LAST FIVE FIGHTS 1 3 1 ORTHODOX HEIGHT: 5'9" REACH 70 UFC TAKEDOWN DEF: 76%
UFC RECORD 12 8 2 LAST FIGHT: 12/08/12 AGE 35

FIGHTER RECORD OVERALL Wins Loss Draw NOTES FIGHTER RECORD TOF Wins Loss Draw NOTES
JOEY GILBERT 2 3 0 UFC DEBUT JOEY GILBERT 1 1 0 UFC DEBUT
DIN THOMAS 26 9 0 1 NC DIN THOMAS 12 1 0
CAOL UNO 29 16 5
CAOL UNO 13 4 2
JENS PULVER 27 19 1 UFC TITLE FIGHT (LOSS) JENS PULVER 12 2 1 UFC TITLE FIGHT (LOSS)
PAUL CREIGHTON 3 1 0
PAUL CREIGHTON 3 0 0
MATT SERRA 11 7 0
MATT SERRA 6 1 0
CAOL UNO 29 16 5 UFC TITLE FIGHT (DRAW) CAOL UNO 15 5 1 UFC TITLE FIGHT (DRAW)
TAKANORI GOMI 34 9 0 1 NC TAKANORI GOMI 14 1 0
MATT HUGHES 45 9 0 UFC TITLE WIN MATT HUGHES 35 3 0 UFC TITLE WIN
DUANE LUDWIG 21 14 0
DUANE LUDWIG 10 2 0
RODRIGO GRACIE 6 2 1
RODRIGO GRACIE 5 0

LYOTO MACHIDA 20 4 0 (LOSS) LYOTO MACHIDA 5 0 0 (LOSS)
RENZO GRACIE 13 7 1 1 NC RENZO GRACIE 10 5 1 1 NC
GEORGES ST. PIERRE 25 2 0 (LOSS) GEORGES ST. PIERRE 11 1 0 (LOSS)
MATT HUGHES 45 9 0 UFC TITLE FIGHT (LOSS) MATT HUGHES 40 4 0 UFC TITLE FIGHT (LOSS)
JENS PULVER 27 19 1
JENS PULVER 21 7 1
JOE STEVENSON 31 15 0 UFC TITLE WIN JOE STEVENSON 28 7 0 UFC TITLE WIN
SEAN SHERK 36 4 1 UFC TITLE DEFENSE SEAN SHERK 34 2 1 UFC TITLE DEFENSE
GEORGES ST. PIERRE 25 2 0 UFC TITLE FIGHT (LOSS) GEORGES ST. PIERRE 16 2 0 UFC TITLE FIGHT (LOSS)
KENNY FLORIAN 14 6 0 UFC TITLE DEFENSE KENNY FLORIAN 11 3 0 UFC TITLE DEFENSE
DIEGO SANCHEZ 24 6 0 UFC TITLE DEFENSE DIEGO SANCHEZ 21 2 0 UFC TITLE DEFENSE
FRANKIE EDGAR 16 4 1 UFC TITLE FIGHT (LOSS) FRANKIE EDGAR 12 1 0 UFC TITLE FIGHT (LOSS)
FRANKIE EDGAR 16 4 1 UFC TITLE FIGHT (LOSS) FRANKIE EDGAR 13 1 0 UFC TITLE FIGHT (LOSS)
MATT HUGHES 45 9 0
MATT HUGHES 45 7 0
JON FITCH 25 6 1 1NC (DRAW) JON FITCH 23 3 0 1NC (DRAW)
NICK DIAZ 26 9 0 1 NC (LOSS) NICK DIAZ 25 7 0 1 NC (LOSS)
RORY MACDONALD 15 2 0 (LOSS) RORY MACDONALD 13 1 0 (LOSS)
TOTALS: 636 213 18 73.00% TOTALS: 454 73 7 85.01%
AVERAGE: 23.55 7.88 0.66
AVERAGE: 16.81 2.70 0.26
UFC TOTALS: 542 177 16 73.74% UFC TOTALS: 410 65 6 85.23%
UFC AVERAGE: 24.64 8.05 0.72
UFC AVERAGE: 18.64 3 0.27
LIGHTWEIGHT TOTAL 325 138 15 67.99% LIGHTWEIGHT TOTAL 216 38 6 83.07%
LIGHTWEIGHT AVERAGE 21.67 9.2 1
LIGHTWEIGHT AVERAGE 14.4 2.53 0.4

Penn has only won 59% of his fights. There is no denying that.

Even at lightweight his record is 11-3-1 for a 73% win rate which doesn't suggest world beater. He does however have a near 91% finish rate at lightweight. However he's only lost twice at lightweight since 2002: to Frankie Edgar in a pair of fights in 2010.

Now Let's Look at Edgar's Record:

FIGHTER Wins Loss Draw WIN % OF FIGHTS FINISH % OF FIGHTS (T)KO SUB UFC STRIKING ACC: 39%
FRANKIE EDGAR 16 4 1 76.19% 43.75% 4 3 UFC STRIKING DEF: 71%
LAST FIVE FIGHTS 2 3 0 ORTHODOX HEIGHT: 5'6" REACH 72 UFC TAKEDOWN ACC: 35%
UFC RECORD 10 4 1 LAST FIGHT: 07/06/13 AGE 32 UFC TAKEDOWN DEF: 64%
FIGHTER RECORD OVERALL Wins Loss Draw
FIGHTER RECORD TOF Wins Loss Draw NOTES
ERIC URESK 7 5 0
ERIC URESK 0 0 0
MARK GETTO 1 5 1
MARK GETTO 0 0 1
JEROME ISIP 2 10 0
JEROME ISIP 1 4 0
STEVE MCCABE 6 14 0
STEVE MCCABE 1 0 0
DEIVIDAS TAUROSEVICIUS 17 5 0
DEIVIDAS TAUROSEVICIUS 4 1 0
JIM MILLER 23 4 0 1NC JIM MILLER 5 0 0
TYSON GRIFFIN 16 7 0 UFC DEBUT TYSON GRIFFIN 8 0 0 UFC DEBUT
MARK BOCEK 11 5 0
MARK BOCEK 4 0 0
SPENCER FISHER 24 9 0
SPENCER FISHER 20 3 0
GRAY MAYNARD 11 3 1 1NC (LOSS) GRAY MAYNARD 4 0 0 1NC (LOSS)
HERMES FRANCA 22 12 0 1NC HERMES FRANCA 18 6 0
SEAN SHERK 36 4 1
SEAN SHERK 35 3 1
MATT VEACH 16 5 0
MATT VEACH 11 0 0
BJ PENN 16 9 2 UFC LW TITLE WIN BJ PENN 15 5 1 UFC LW TITLE WIN
BJ PENN 16 9 2 UFC LW TITLE DEFENSE BJ PENN 15 6 1 UFC LW TITLE DEFENSE
GRAY MAYNARD 11 3 1 1NC (DRAW) GRAY MAYNARD 10 0 0 1NC (DRAW)
GRAY MAYNARD 11 3 1 1NC UFC TITLE DEFENSE GRAY MAYNARD 10 0 1 1NC UFC TITLE DEFENSE
BENSON HENDERSON 19 3 0 UFC LW TITLE LOSS BENSON HENDERSON 15 2 0 UFC LW TITLE LOSS
BENSON HENDERSON 19 3 0 (LOSS) LW TITLE FIGHT BENSON HENDERSON 16 2 0 (LOSS) LW TITLE FIGHT
JOSE ALDO 23 1 0 (LOSS) FW TITLE FIGHT JOSE ALDO 21 1 0 (LOSS) FW TITLE FIGHT
CHARLE OLIVERIA 16 4 0 1NC CHARLE OLIVERIA 16 3 0 1NC
TOTALS: 323 123 9 70.98% TOTALS: 229 36 5 84.81%
AVERAGE: 15.38 5.85 0.42
AVERAGE: 10.90 1.71 0.23
UFC TOTALS: 267 80 8 75.21% UFC TOTALS: 218 31 4 86.16%
UFC AVERAGE: 17.8 5.33 0.53
UFC AVERAGE: 14.53 2.06 0.26

Edgar is an amazing fighter and athlete with astounding striking defense for an MMA fighter at 71%. He's been the champion and defended it successfully... twice. His opponents have an impressive 86% win rate at time of contest, but it is greatly affected by the three fighters he rematched in a row.

The First Two Fights:

Fight 1: UFC 112 Invincible

Fighter KD Sig. Str. Sig. Str. % Total Str. TD TD % Sub. Att. Pass Rev.
FIGHTS TOTALS
Edgar 0 61 of 232 26% 63 of 234 1 of 13 8% 0 0 0
Penn 0 71 of 262 27% 72 of 263 0 of 0 0% 0 0 0

As you can see the first fight was very close, and even years later I still score the fight for Penn. Edgar landed just 1 take down in 13. The only round I clearly give to Edgar was the fifth.

The ending was controversial to say the least, and an immediate rematch was ordered.

Fight 2: UFC 118 Edgar vs. Penn II

Fighter KD Sig. Str. Sig. Str. % Total Str. TD TD % Sub. Att. Pass Rev.
FIGHTS TOTALS
Edgar 0 94 of 234 40% 142 of 285 3 of 9 33% 0 1 1
Penn 0 36 of 146 25% 56 of 167 2 of 3 67% 0 0 0

This bout was scored 50-45 across the board for Edgar. Penn looked outclassed by a faster and better conditioned Edgar. To be honest I don't think he even wanted to be there.

Since the Second Bout:

Penn has gone 1-2-1.

With fights against faded legend Matt Hughes, and three top ten welterweight's in a row in Jon Fitch (Draw), Nick Diaz (Loss) and Rory MacDonald (Loss). He hasn't fought since December 2012 when he was completely out struck by MacDonald.

All three opponents were considerably larger than he, with Diaz and MacDonald owning 6 inch reach advantages and Fitch a 4 inch reach advantage, and all three being at least 3 inches taller. The only fight that he looked truly awful in was against the massive MacDonald. Watching both the Fitch and Diaz fight, if he'd come in with better cardio I could easily see him winning those fights, with him handily winning the first round of both bouts

His own damn fault for fighting well above his natural weight class.

Edgar has gone 2-3-1.

Frankie Edgar did not have an easier time himself. His three losses were to two top ten fighters and one pound for pound top 3. However, in his win against Maynard he was badly hurt multiple times before winning by TKO in the 4th.

His next three fights were all losses. But there are some who believe that Edgar easily won 2 of those 3. I thought he beat Henderson in the rematch, but did lose to Aldo. But that's just my opinion.

In his last fight against Charles Oliveria he won a pretty clear cut decision against the highly touted prospect....even if it wasn't as easy has many expected it to be.

Going into the Third Bout:

Edgar will be the favorite no doubt. He'll be 32 assuming this bout takes place before mid October.

Penn will likely come in as a sizable underdog(expected to lose by decision) and he'll be 35.

Needed for an Edgar Victory:

Mindset: Edgar needs to come in taking Penn seriously. He needs to think of himself as a top contender a fight from a title again. His motivation needs to be there because if he doesn't there's a sound chance that he'll Penn lightly.

Gameplan: For Edgar's usual gameplan to work easily he needs Penn to play ball with what he does best: use sharp boxing threatening take downs and quick effective footwork. Penn played right into this the first two bouts. He may have knocked out Maynard (Apparently his chin is easier to crack than once believed) but he will not have the power to stop Penn by strikes. Plenty of those who dislike Penn and his fans are quick to say he'll stop Penn by strikes. Two much more powerful and larger strikers used Penn's head as a speed bag and they never dropped him. Though an elbow from Rory nearly did the job.

Needed for a Penn Victory:

Mindset: Quite simply, Penn needs to come in hungry and motivated. Not "Motivated Penn" or "Old BJ." He needs to come in wanting to win like his career is on the line. If he loses this fight there is no coming back. There is no way we could ever take him seriously as a fighter again.

Gameplan: In his bouts with Fitch and Diaz, Penn employed a wrestle first into BJJ gameplan until he tired. Fitch took him down in the third and beat him up from the top position. Diaz took over the fight with his longer reach and out struck the smaller man. For Penn to beat Edgar he needs to be far more aggressive than he was in the other two fights with him. He needs to employ grappling from the top position and wear down the smaller Edgar, using elbows and submission threats. He won't win the cardio battle so he'll need to finish as quick as he can. Edgar has never been finished in 4 career defeats, however he's been badly hurt but strikes on multiple occasions and Penn is capable of hitting very hard.

That being said, in addition to to his already stellar NCAA DIV 1 level wrestling, Edgar has since obtained his black belt in BJJ under Ricardo Almeida so submitted Edgar won't be a walk in the park.

The likely outcome:

This fan post is already over 2100 words long so finishing it quickly is paramount as peoples attention span is rarely long enough to finish an internet article this length.

I am a huge BJ Penn fan and though Edgar has won me over in recent years I will always root for Penn. Logically speaking...

Edgar by Unanimous Decision ... in a five round fight. 48-47

Penn by Unanimous Decision ... in a three round fight. 29-28

I'll leave you with this: Penn grappling with UFC Bantamweight Champion at Nova Uniao taken last week:

Mma_bjpenn03_anahissa_15_medium

via cdn0.sbnation.com

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