by Ken Pishna – MMAWeekly.com
The anticipated showdown between UFC lightweight champion
B.J. Penn and number one contender Kenny Florian will finally take place. A
blog post on Penn’s official website
stated that Florian has already signed his bout agreement and "as for
B.J., we received the bout agreement (Friday) afternoon and plan on making this
The post states the bout will headline UFC 101 on Aug. 8 in
The bout will be Penn’s first defense of his lightweight
title since defeating Sean Sherk at UFC 84 in May of last year. It will also
mark his first action in the Octagon since a loss to UFC welterweight champion
Georges St. Pierre at UFC 94 in January, which has been mired in controversy
over accusations of improper usage of Vaseline by St. Pierre’s camp.
"I look forward to the challenge," Penn stated
about the defense.
Florian earned his title shot – the second of his UFC career
– by building a current six-fight winning streak, which includes
back-to-back victories over Joe Stevenson and Roger Huerta in his most recent
fights. He has been waiting for this opportunity for nearly a year while the
Penn vs. St. Pierre mega-fight ran its course.
Earlier this week, Florian stated, "It has been a long
road back and I am very grateful for the opportunity. Rarely does one get the
chance to fight for a championship belt in the UFC and it’s even more
infrequent to fight a legend.
"B.J. Penn has been someone I have looked up to for a
long time. He has accomplished many amazing things. So I am looking
forward to testing myself against one of the greatest if not the greatest
lightweight fighter in the world."
The bout and event have yet to be officially announced by
the Ultimate Fighting Championship, but several sources had already indicated
the likelihood of UFC 101 taking place in Philadelphia instead of Portland, Ore.,
as first thought.