BJ Penn retired last night, after losing via ref stoppage to Frankie Edgar. A champion in two weight divisions, capable even of fighting in divisions as high as 205, and vs. Lyoto Machida, Penn is a lock for the UFC Hall of Fame.
“This is the end,” said Penn at the post fight press conference as transcribed by John Morgan. “I’m thinking to myself, why did you step back into that octagon after the beating that Rory MacDonald gave you? The reason is because I really needed to find out.
“If I didn’t make this night happen for myself, I would have always wondered and went back and forth and begged Dana to let me get back in. I guess I just needed some closure.”
There was an outpouring of congratulations for "The Prodigy" from across the sport, via Twitter.
Pat Miletich @patmiletich
@bjpenndotcom Big, tall, fat or small. BJ, fought them all. You were amazing to watch all those years, brother.
Cole Miller @colemillerATT
I tell everyone @bjpenndotcom is my favorite fighter of all time. Thanks for being a martial artist and speaking out agains steroids!
Tyson Griffin @TysonGriffin
Hats off to you @bjpenndotcom it's been a pleasure watching you fight over the years! You'll always be #1 P4P in my book!
BJ Penn breaks down during an emotional post-fight press conference where he announces his retirement.
Big John McCarthy @JohnMcCarthyMMA
@bjpenndotcom it always has to end somewhere, so if this is the end I wanted to let you know it was always an honor 2 share the cage with u
Robert Whiteford UFC @Flyinjudoka
Birds fly, fish swim and I fight, class act @bjpenndotcom
Joe Lauzon @JoeLauzon
#Depression has set in. Still proud of my brother @bjpenndotcom.
BJ Penn, thank you! It was a pleasure watching you throughout the years. The retirement is well deserved.
Las Vegas Fight Shop @LVFightShop
Thank you @bjpenndotcom for all the great years. He truely showed the world what the word "scrap" meant. Hall Of Fame bound! #TUF19Finale
Seeing a legend like BJ Penn retire is sad man. Congrats on an amazing career and making koreans proud
Gray Maynard @GrayMaynard
2004: went to help @bjpenndotcom w/ wrestling in HI. But he was the one to help me open my eyes to the beauty of fighting.Thank u BJ! Legend
"This is the end"- @bjpenndotcom A legend leaves the Octagon tonight. You are a legend to this sport, BJ
The Ultimate Fighter @UltimateFighter
BJ Penn says that's the end of the road for him. A legend. An absolute legend.
Damon Martin @DamonMartin
BJ Penn emotional at the post fight presser and how could you expect him not to be. He's a LEGEND. A freaking legend
Mike DOLCE @TheDolceDiet
WE LOVE YOU #BJPenn!!!