BJ Penn is a fighter with incredible physical ability, and definitely doesn't lack anything in the confidence department. I realize that Penn was fighting out of his natural weight class against GSP. I also realize that GSP is one of the best fighters on the planet bar none. However, I can't help but think that last nights loss to GSP could affect his next lightweight title defense.
The loss itself isn't the deal breaker, as Penn has suffered losses in his career before. However, it's the way he lost that could be a major factor here. Penn was throughly dominated in every facet of the game, even in the areas where most people consider him to be at the top of the food chain. Anytime a fighter gets dominated in that sense, it could cause that fighter to question himself. Penn has never been dominated like that and no one knows how he'll respond.
BJ Penn will be defending his lightweight title against Kenny Florian at some point this year. Even before UFC 94 last night, I said a Florian/Penn fight would be much more competitive than most people think. That was confirmed for me after Florian's performance against Joe Stevenson at UFC 91. Could last night's loss to GSP affect Penn going into a lightweight title defense against Kenny Florian? Do you think Florian gained just a bit of confidence while seeing Penn being mauled by GSP? Let me hear your thoughts.
[Note by Kelvin Hunt, 02/02/09 2:20 PM EST ]Josh Gross Reports BJ Penn Is Mulling Retirement. When I wrote the piece above I knew that the loss would affect him, but I honestly never thought he would consider retirement. I don't think he'll retire though. A fighter with his mindset would not allow himself to go out on such a sour note as his performance at UFC 94 in my opinion.
[Note by Kelvin Hunt, 02/02/09 9:47 PM EST ]BJ Penn will not be retiring and is filing a formal complaint in regards to the vaseline controversy at UFC 94.