B.J. Penn’s Legacy: Discussing His Position Among All-Time Greatest MMA Fighters

The MMA Fighting crew celebrates the career of former UFC lightweight and welterweight champion B.J. Penn in a DAMN! They Were Good podcast episode.

DAMN! They Were Good celebrates the careers of the most exciting and influential fighters in MMA history. On this episode, the crew remembers the best of former UFC lightweight and welterweight champion, B.J. Penn. As the first non-Brazilian to ever win gold at the BJJ World Championships, Penn entered the UFC in 2001 with an immense amount of hype, and over his 18-year career, the man named “The Prodigy” more than lived up to his moniker.

Arguably the best lightweight in the world at the time, just three years into his MMA career, Penn did the unthinkable, jumping up a weight class and submitting the top pound-for-pound fighter in the sport, Matt Hughes, to claim his first UFC title. After that historic win, Penn bounced around, chasing ever greater feats, like destroying lineal lightweight champion Duane Ludwig and then facing off with future light heavyweight champion Lyoto Machida, losing a competitive decision. In 2008, Penn finally decided to stop chasing fights of fancy and put his head down to stake out a legacy at lightweight, claiming the title with a win over Joe Stevenson; becoming the second fighter in history to win titles in two weight classes inside the UFC, and still the only man to win the lightweight and welterweight belts.

For nearly a decade, Penn chased greatness anywhere he could in a way that few ever have. That daring made him beloved to fans and respected among his fellow fighters. Even to this day, all time greats like Anderson Silva have called him the greatest fighter ever. The host Jed Meshew, is joined by Shaheen Al-Shatti and Eric Jackman to remember their favorite moments from “The Prodigy.” New episodes of the DAMN! They Were Good podcast come out monthly and are available on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, and wherever else you find your favorite podcasts. This week’s episode can be heard below.


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