Lightweight Championship bout: BJ "The Prodigy" Penn (-270) vs. Diego "Nightmare" Sanchez (+230) 

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Without a doubt, BJ “The Prodigy” Penn (14-5) is the best 155 pound in the world. There is no one in the division that can touch him. Most 155 pound fighters can't even touch him BUT Diego "Nightmare" Sanchez (25-2) is not a 155 pound fighter.

It might be surprising to most that you would choose Diego Sanchez to beat BJ Penn but he has problems with bigger fighters and he has problems with fighters that like to press the action. That and the +220 online sports betting odds, leads me to lay my money on the underdog in this fight.

Diego is a slightly better wrestling and he has better striking. The real determining factor in why he will win this fight is pace. Diego Sanchez will push the pace of the fight and he will pressure the fights. BJ Penn likes to control his mixed martial arts fights but when a fighter takes control of the pace they usually are able to dictate and beat BJ.

Also BJ Penn has problems with fighters that are bigger and stronger than him. Penn lost to Georges St Pierre twice at UFC 94: St-Pierre vs. Penn 2 and UFC 58: US vs. Canada because GSP was bigger and he pushed the pace of the fight. Penn lost to Matt Hughes at UFC 63: Hughes vs. Penn because he was not in shape and near the end of the fight Hughes pushed the pace and he was a bigger fighter.

Diego Sanchez is a big 155 pound fighter. He is normally a welterweight fighter and could even fight at middleweight if he wanted to. He will cut a lot of weigh coming into this fight and after his weight cut, Sanchez will most likely be at 170 pounds fight day. He will be a much larger and more powerful fighter and he will pose Penn some problems because of Diego’s size.

Size will play big role in this fight, and Penn has not done so well with fighters that are bigger than him. BJ dominates same size fighters like he did with Kenny Florian at UFC 101: Declaration and Sean Sherk at UFC 84: Ill Will, But remember Sanchez is the bigger fighter and that is a major factor when fighting BJ Penn.

The second factor of this fight that gives Sanchez the advantage is pace. Diego is a very aggressive fighter and he likes to push the pace and come forward on his fighters. BJ Penn has never been a fighter that trained very hard and if you could pressure him early in the first couple of rounds he tends to gas buy round 3.

Bottom Line: Remember Diego Sanchez was a format member of the Greg Jackson team and Jackson was in the corner when GSP fought Penn so Sanchez will fight a similar fight that St Pierre fought. Sanchez will be prepared for this fight and he will shock many. 

I love the fact that Sanchez is the bigger, stronger and more aggressive fighter. These are the three factors that BJ Penn has troubles with in fighters. UFC sports betting wise the +220 betting odds are perfect and I would lay a small amount on the money line for Diego to win this fight. I don’t think Diego has the power to knock out Penn or the grappling skill to sub him but he has have the power and strength to win the stand and get the take down points.

Look for Diego Sanchez to be the New UFC Lightweight Champion with a Split Decision
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