A dynamic welterweight bout is expected to take place when B.J. Penn takes on Rory MacDonald who both will be vying to move up the heavily contested welterweight ladder. Both fighters believe they are the superior fighters, and it will be interesting to see what strategies they try to implement when they square off.
B.J. Penn is adamant about facing the Tristar gym, a gym that he believes he can still compete against. He has lost to George St. Pierre twice; both fights were competitive despite B.J. being out-sized. A win over MacDonald would bring his record to 1-2 against Tristar fighters, and it seems like Penn has the fire back under him.
When Penn is motivated, he has the capabilities to beat top opponents, such as Sean Sherk, Kenny Florian, Matt Hughes, and Diego Sanchez. Penn has competed in both the lightweight and welterweight divisions, and he is one of only two men to ever hold belts in two division. Penn is coming off a loss to Nick Diaz; a bout that showed Diaz competent boxing skills. Penn just didn’t have any answer for the relentless attack of Diaz. If he wants to remain relevant in the welterweight division he will need to make a statement against the younger and stronger MacDonald.
Rory MacDonald is coming into this fight with a lot of hype and momentum behind him. He is currently 13-1 in his MMA career, and holds notable wins over Che Mills, Mike Pyle, and Nate Diaz. A win over Penn certainly moves him up in the welterweight division and also cements his status as being a legitimate contender.
MacDonald has shown a brilliant wrestling attack coupled with his striking; something his training partner George St. Pierre has also been known for. He also has showcased some devastating ground and pound, and it will be interesting to see if he can hold Penn down in order to test his cardio.