B.J. Penn Accepts Rory MacDonald's Challenge

Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

"Rory, I accept your challenge!"

And with that, B.J. Penn's brief retirement from MMA came to an end.

A little over 24 hours after welterweight prospect Rory MacDonald said he wanted to fight Penn at UFC 152 on Sept. 22 in Toronto, "The Prodigy" announced on his official Web site that he is also interested in fighting the Canadian.

On Monday's episode of The MMA Hour, the 22-year-old MacDonald explained why he wanted to fight Penn.

"It's more of the idea that he may be retiring, so how many opportunities am l going to get to fight a guy like BJ after he’s gone?" he said. "I think it'd be a great fight. I know I’m going to fight all these guys in the top 10 eventually. I’m a young guy and these guys are going to be around for a long time and I know I’m going to get my shot against all these guys, and maybe I’ll be missing my opportunity if I wait too long with B.J."

According to MacDonald's manager Lex McMahon and BJPenn.com, contracts haven't been signed, but both sides appear hopeful the fight will take place later this year.

Penn announced his retirement from the sport following his UFC 137 loss to Nick Diaz in October. However, he seemed to warm up to the idea of returning in recent weeks.

"I'm enjoying training right now," Penn said last month on The MMA Hour. "You never know what the future holds. If Dana puts something together like 'hey, you want to do this?' You never know. You never know what could happen."

And then Rory MacDonald happened.

Watch MacDonald challenge Penn on Monday's episode of The MMA Hour below.

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