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Two big fights announced for June’s UFC event in Oklahoma City

Two big fights announced for June’s UFC event in Oklahoma City

By: Chris Taylor (Kalapaki Joe’s Staff Writer)

Two big fights were just announced for June’s UFC Fight Night event in Oklahoma City.

Former UFC lightweight and welterweight champion BJ Penn will return to the octagon on June 25 when he squares off with Dennis Siver in a featherweight bout.

The UFC Hall of Fame fighter, Penn, was last seen in action this past January in the main event of UFC Fight Night 103 in Phoenix, where he suffered a second-round TKO loss to surging division contender Yair Rodriguez.

The Prodigy has scored thirteen finishes in his sixteen career victories including seven knockouts and six submissions.

Penn’s most recent victory came over former UFC welterweight champion Matt Hughes at UFC 123, who he defeated via knockout in just 21-seconds.

Meanwhile, Dennis Siver has not competed inside the octagon since suffering a decision loss to Tatsuya Kawajiri in June of 2015.

Siver’s most recent victory came in October of 2014 against Charles Rosa.

The second fight announced for the UFC Fight Night event in Oklahoma City was a middleweight bout between former welterweight champion Johny Hendricks and Tim Boetsch.

Hendricks recently snapped his three-fight losing skid by scoring a unanimous decision victory over Hector Lombard in February, in a bout which served as his middleweight debut (185-pounds).

Bigg Rigg has gone 2-3 over his past five contests suffering loses to Stephen Thompson, Kelvin Gastelum and Neil Magny in that time.

As for Tim Boetsch, the middleweight staple was last seen in action at UFC 208 where he suffered a first-round submission loss to perennial division contender Ronaldo Jacare Souza.

Prior to the setback, the Barbarian had scored back-to-back wins, including a brutal first-round knockout victory over Rafael Natal at UFC 205 this past November in New York City.

Who do you think will emerge victorious in these two newly announced UFC scraps?

BJ Penn vs. Yair Rodriguez set to headline UFC Fight Night 103

BJ Penn vs. Yair Rodriguez set to headline UFC Fight Night 103

By: Chris Taylor (Kalapaki Joe’s Staff Writer)

Former UFC lightweight and welterweight champion BJ Penn (16-10-2) will return to the octagon this January in Phoenix, Arizona.

UFC officials just announced that Penn will be squaring off with Yair Rodriquez (9-1 MMA) in the main event of UFC Fight Night 103 which takes place January 15 at Phoenix’s Talking Stick Resort Arena.

The event will air on Fox Sports 1 following the early prelims on UFC Fight Pass.

“The Prodigy” was last seen in action at the ‘TUF 19 Finale’ in July of 2014 where he suffered a TKO loss to former UFC lightweight champion Frankie Edgar in a bout that served as his featherweight debut. The UFC Hall of Famer has stated that he is planning on making a run at the promotions 145-pound title.

BJ’s most recent victory came over fellow UFC Hall of Famer Matt Hughes at UFC 123 by way of first-round knockout.

BJ Penn

Thirteen of Penn’s sixteen career victories have come by form of stoppage (submission/KO).

Meanwhile, Yair Rodriguez was last seen in action at August’s UFC Fight Night 92 event, where he earned a thrilling five-round split-decision victory over Alex Caceres.

Prior to that, Rodriguez had scored a highlight reel head kick knockout victory over Andre Fili at April’s UFC 197 pay-per-view event.

“Pantera” has gone 5-0 since debuting in the UFC back in November of 2014.

UFC 192

Penn was expected to make his octagon return against former UFC featherweight title challenger Ricardo Lamas at last month’s scheduled UFC Fight Night 97 event.

However, due to an injury suffered in training camp, “The Prodigy” was forced to pullout of the contest and October’s UFC Manila event was later cancelled entirely.

Penn’s withdrawal from the slated scrap with Lamas marked the first-time in the UFC Hall of Famer’s illustrious career that he had pulled out of a fight with an injury.

Tickets for UFC Fight Night Phoenix will go on sale later this month. The card will be televised on FOX Sports 1.

The following seven bouts have already been announced for the January 15 event:

 

BJ Penn (16-10-2) vs. Yair Rodriguez (9-1) – Featherweight bout
Ben Saunders (19-7-2) vs. Court McGee (19-5) – Welterweight bout
Jordan Rinaldi (12-5) vs. Devin Powell (8-1) – Lightweight
Tony Martin (10-3) of Boston vs. Erik Koch (15-4) – Lightweight
Cyril Asker (7-2) vs. Dmitri Smoliakov (8-1) – Heavyweight
Viktor Pesta (10-3) vs. Damian Grabowski (20-4) – Heavyweight
Christensen (13-4) vs. Bojan Mihalovic (10-4) – Light Heavyweight

Who would do you think will emerge victories when Yair Rodriguez and BJ Penn throw down in Phoenix this January?

BJ Penn aiming to return at UFC Phoenix this January

BJ Penn aiming to return at UFC Phoenix this January

By: Chris Taylor (Kalapaki Joe’s Staff Writer)

Former UFC lightweight and welterweight champion BJ Penn (16-10-2) was expected to make his octagon return against former UFC featherweight title challenger Ricardo Lamas at last month’s scheduled UFC Fight Night 97 event.

However, due to an injury suffered in training camp, “The Prodigy” was forced to pullout of the contest and October’s UFC Manila event was later cancelled entirely.

Penn’s withdrawal from the slated scrap with Lamas marked the first-time in the UFC Hall of Famer’s illustrious career that he had pulled out of a fight with an injury.

According to BJPENN.com’s Chris Taylor the Hawaiian legend is back in the gym and aiming to return at January’s newly announced UFC Fight Night event in Phoenix, Arizona.

“The Prodigy” was last seen in action at the ‘TUF 19 Finale’ in July of 2014 where he suffered a TKO loss to former UFC lightweight champion Frankie Edgar in a bout that served as his featherweight debut. The UFC Hall of Famer has stated that he is planning on making a run at the promotions 145-pound title.

BJ’s most recent victory came over fellow UFC Hall of Famer Matt Hughes at UFC 123 by way of first-round knockout.

BJ Penn

Thirteen of Penn’s sixteen career victories have come by form of stoppage (submission/KO).

Tickets for UFC Fight Night Phoenix will go on sale later this month. The card will be televised on FOX Sports 1.

The following six bouts have already been announced for the January 15 event:

Ben Saunders (19-7-2) vs. Court McGee (19-5) – Welterweight bout
Jordan Rinaldi (12-5) vs. Devin Powell (8-1) – Lightweight
Tony Martin (10-3) of Boston vs. Erik Koch (15-4) – Lightweight
Cyril Asker (7-2) vs. Dmitri Smoliakov (8-1) – Heavyweight
Viktor Pesta (10-3) vs. Damian Grabowski (20-4) – Heavyweight
Christensen (13-4) vs. Bojan Mihalovic (10-4) – Light Heavyweight

Who would you like to see the former two-division champion BJ Penn square off with this January 15 in Phoenix?

UFC Manila cancelled after BJ Penn’s injury

UFC Manila cancelled after BJ Penn’s injury

By: Chris Taylor (Kalapaki Joe’s Staff Writer)

After losing its scheduled main event, the UFC has now cancelled the entire Fight Night 97, according to a report by FloCombat.

The UFC has released a statement on the cancellation of the card, saying:

“Athletes scheduled to compete on the Oct. 15 card will be rebooked at upcoming UFC events in the near future. Each athlete set to compete on Oct. 15 will also receive compensation due to the card being rescheduled. With its 2016 calendar finalized, UFC officials will discuss future dates for the event.”

The card initially took a hit after an injury forced our namesake BJ Penn to pull out of a main event bout with Ricardo Lamas. At the time, the UFC was looking for a replacement for Penn, with 135 pounder Bryan Caraway offering to step in for the featherweight bout.

Penn said of the injury:

“I suffered a rib injury in training and I apologize to the fans in Manila who were expecting to watch me compete,” Penn said. “I hope to be back in the Octagon soon.”

BJ Penn vs. Ricardo Lamas staredown

How do you feel about the card’s cancellation?