This coming September 4 the Honolulu International Open will mark the return of major competitions to Hawaii. But what’s more, the IBJJF is preparing a special tribute to the six resident black belts on the archipelago, among them BJ Penn.
“We’re going to present black belt diplomas to BJ Penn, Egan Inoue, Renato Charuto, Luis Limão, Kai Garcia and Bruno Longman. We’re contacting them all. The event will be really cool and there’s only a week left to sign up,” recounts André Fernandes.
On August 28 the honored BJ will see action at UFC 118 in Boston, when he attempts to take back the organization’s lightweight belt against Frankie Edgar. BJ remembers his days participating in IBJJF competitions, which he considers an important step in his success as a fighter.
“I never took it seriously, but I started to change my way of thinking before the World Jiu-Jitsu Championship finals. I was in the final and remember thinking: ‘I’ll never be in this position again. So get out there and do the possible and impossible to win.’ And that’s why I think today I’m good under pressure,” remembers BJ on the UFC website.
For anyone who wants to be a champion like BJ, or just wants to feel the adrenaline and put their Jiu-Jitsu to the test, all you need to do is sign up for the Honolulu Open clicking here.
Now in the meantime, check out “Baby” Jay at the 2000 World Championship, the year he became the first non-Brazilian black belt to win the title.