Prior to meeting BJ Penn on Saturday at “UFC 112: Invincible,” Frankie Edgar murmured something about shocking the mixed martial arts world. However, given his 5-to-1 underdog status, nobody paid him much attention.
Perhaps we should have …
Edgar pulled off one of the biggest upsets in Octagon history at the Concert Arena in Abu Dhabi when he handed the Hawaiian a (50-45, 48-47, 49-46) unanimous decision loss to capture the lightweight crown.
Prior to Saturday’s contest, Penn hadn’t dropped a 155-pound scrap in over eight years. Since returning to the division three years ago, he’s finished all five of his opponents in devastating fashion.
“This is it,” Edger said of reaching his lifelong goal. “BJ is the greatest lightweight ever and I just beat him. I can just hope to be half the champion he was.”
Edgar did a masterful job in using his cat-like quickness to engage just long enough to land shots, while avoiding damage in return. The Jersey boy’s speed and movement kept Penn off balance for much of the contest, appearing to frustrate the former title holder as they entered the championship rounds.
All five-rounds were very close to score, so most were shocked to not only hear that Edgar did enough to earn the decision, but the fact one of the judges cage-side had him winning every single stanza.
Following the biggest victory of his career, the humble 27-year-old soaked in the moment for just a second before giving props to those who contributed to his evolution.
“It sounds good man, it sounds good,” Edgar said of the “champion” title that will now be attached to his name. “I wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for my teammates.”