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Penn to coach TUF 19 opposite Edgar, trilogy fight at 145 to follow



It’s been 9 months since B.J. Penn has competed inside of the octagon. It was inevitable that an announcement was coming soon on whether or not he would be returning to competition, or hanging up his gloves and ending his Hall of Fame career. That announcement came today on Wednesday’s edition of UFC Tonight via Ariel Helwani.

Helwani reported on the weekly FOX Sports 1 program that the Hilo kid will return to coach Season 19 of The Ultimate Fighter opposite the man who beat him twice back in 2010 for the UFC lightweight championship, Frankie Edgar. The two will do the dance for at third time after the season concludes but this time it will take place at featherweight. That’s right, Penn, a man whose last fight was contested at 170 lbs., will be making the drop to 145 to take on Edgar in 2014.

The show will debut in April (it was originally reported that the show would debut in January and has since been corrected) on FOX Sports 1 and it will be Penn’s second stint as a TUF coach. His first came back in 2005 during on the 5th season of TUF where he returned to the lightweight division to coach opposite Jens Pulver. Nearly a decade later, the man who put the lightweight division on the map will be debuting at 145 to take on the man who outworked him for 10 rounds at 155 lbs. for the title.

Edgar has hit a rough patch since dropping the lightweight strap he beat Penn for back in 2010. That said, his impressive victory over Charles Oliveira this summer seems to have him back on track after dropping three straight title fights in two different weight classes.

It was Edgar’s speed and cardio that gave Penn fits at 155. How or if we’ll see anything different when the two compete once again remains to be seen. One thing that is for sure is that Penn brings major star power to a show that has seen a steady decline in ratings recently. There may not be the bad blood between Edgar and Penn that there is between Rousey and Tate but the competitive spirit in both of these men will make for a great season and a very interesting trilogy bout.

The focus of this season will be middleweights and light heavyweights.

What are your thoughts on these two former lightweight champions coaching against one another and fighting for a third time?

via Dave Reno for hov-mma

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