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B.J. Penn to train at JacksonWink MMA, challenges Lentz to bout at UFC 197

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Could B.J. Penn be making another UFC comeback? He wants to fight Nik Lentz at UFC 197.

Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

You've heard this song and dance before - UFC Hall of Famer B.J. Penn wants to fight again. He has come out of retirement more than Terry Funk, it seems. But this time, he might have the backing of a superstar gym to aid him in the process. The 37-year-old Hawaiian legend posted a pic of himself with Greg Jackson of JacksonWink MMA on Instagram, leading to some speculation:

We coming !! @ufc @danawhiteufc

A photo posted by @bjpenn on

If you can't see the caption, it says: "We coming !! @ufc @danawhiteufc"

MMA Fighting talked to Jackson, and he's "optimistic" about some plans with Penn:

"I'm pleased with how the meeting went and very optimistic about the future. BJ doesn't have any specific fight plans, but we have [our own] plans."

Not long after that, Penn officially challenged Nik Lentz to a fight at UFC 197:

"@niklentz this is a formal challenge for Nik Lentz to meet me in the octagon March 5th in Las Vegas. Nik you wrote a silly poem about me making fun of me, you said stuff about me and my parents, and you been making a #bringpennback hashtag, I ask you today to be a man and back up everything you said, talk the talk walk the walk , uncle BJ is mad already #youout #bringpennback #hiloboys #hawaii #allhawaii"

Penn (16-10-2) became the first man to win titles in two weight classes in the UFC, and had a dominant lightweight run from 2007-2009. He announced his retirement after a second loss to Frankie Edgar in 2010, then again after a welterweight loss to Nick Diaz in 2011. After a loss to Rory MacDonald in 2012 he took another break from the sport, but came back at featherweight in 2014 for another fight with Frankie Edgar. He was soundly defeated and went back into retirement.

Until now, apparently.