MANILA, Philippines – A high-profile featherweight encounter is projected to headline the Ultimate Fighting Championship’s second live Philippine event dubbed “Fight Night Manila 2” on October 15.
SB Nation’s MMAFighting.com reports that mixed martial arts legend BJ Penn will be in the main event of UFC Fight Night Manila 2 against former featherweight title contender Ricardo Lamas, but the promotion has yet to confirm the marquee match-up.
Penn (16-10-2) announced his decision to come out of retirement this past January after briefly calling it a career when he suffered a brutal third-round stoppage loss to Frankie Edgar in July 2014.
His much-awaited Octagon return at UFC 199 last June was postponed after the two-division world champion was slapped with a 6-month suspension due to a violation of the company’s anti-doping policy.
Penn disclosed his usage of IV in the pre-fight drug test, which is prohibited by the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA).
Penn’s suspension comes to an end on September 25, making him available for UFC Fight Night Manila 2.
The 37-year-old native of Hilo, Hawaii is currently on a 3-fight losing skid and has not won a single match since he knocked out Matt Hughes in just 21 seconds in November 2010.
Penn is one of the only two fighters in UFC history to win world titles in multiple weight classes, submitting Matt Hughes for the welterweight championship in January 2004 before adding the organization’s lightweight belt to his résumé 4 years later with a second-round submission win over Joe “Daddy” Stevenson.
“The Prodigy” was inducted into the UFC Hall of Fame in July 2015 for his stellar stint in the lower weight classes.
In the other corner, Lamas (16-5) is fresh from a unanimous decision loss to Max Holloway in June and has only won 3 of his last 5 professional outings since yielding to then-UFC featherweight titleholder Jose Aldo.
Prior to his unsuccessful attempt to dethrone Aldo, the 34-year-old Lamas was riding high on a 4-fight winning streak, which included remarkable triumphs over Cub Swanson and Erik Koch.
UFC Fight Night Manila 2 is set to take place at the 20,000-capacity SM Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City, and tickets will be available on August 17. – Rappler.com
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