Bellator apparently letting champion Ben Askren walk away


UFC president Dana White has long explained that he can work with a fighter, even if they don't get along on social networks, or anywhere. Tito Ortiz and White were so ill suited that White once referenced the need for marriage counseling, and agreed to fight Ortiz in the boxing ring. Tito was eventually put into the UFC Hall of Fame (and declined the boxing match).

White and Bellator welterweight Champion Ben Askren bickered bitterly on Twitter last year.

"When ambien can't sleep it takes Ben Askren," tweeted White. "The most boring fighter in MMA history. I would rather watch flys f---."

However, Askren is now a free agent, and White expressed interest.

"We'll talk to Ben," said White. "Yeah, we'll talk to him."

in stark contrast with the fight that took place over Eddie Alvarez, it appears as if Bellator chief Bjorn Rebney is going to let Askren simply walk away.

"I don't think we're going to make an offer at this point," said Rebney. "So I don't see any reason to make anybody sit out."

"If Ben's going to go to the UFC, we should speed up that process so he can go fight. I'd love to see Ben versus GSP."

"If the UFC does make an offer, we'll take a look at it and move on from there. We haven't been proactive yet. I have nothing but good things to say about Ben as a fighter, but we're all very aware of how he fights and what he does... It's not for everyone."

Rebney frankly described Bellator's welterweights as being short on wrestling, and long on striking, and attributed that to the Olympian's dominating success.

"Until the wrestling game evolves they're going to have big problems with a guy like Ben Askren," said Rebney. "He does what he does, takes them out of their environment, and that makes for incredibly lopsided fights."

Askren dares greatly, hoping for a shot at UFC welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre - imaginging Johny Hendricks becoming injured for the Nov. 16 title bout, leaving him to step up and in.

"You never know," said Askren. "Crazier things have happened."

Assuming things are a little less crazy than that, who would you like to see Askren fight first in the UFC?

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Recent Comments »

mclay site profile image  

8/23/13 5:46 AM by mclay

Dana should come in with a high offer just to mess with Bjorn's plan.

Steve4192 site profile image  

8/22/13 11:08 PM by Steve4192

YepDana's negative comments towards Askren are meaningless. He has talked shit about plenty of guys who he wound up signing later, and he had nothing but good things to say about every one of them after they put their name on the dotted line. That's just how Dana rolls. In his world, you can be a bum on one day and a superstar the next.

rbl site profile image  

8/22/13 10:26 PM by rbl

Good point. It's funny how that stuff can change.

liquidrob site profile image  

8/22/13 9:40 PM by liquidrob

"This guy, Ben Askren has won me over, this guys is one of the best wrestlers in MMA, period, next question!" - DanaRemember his thoughts on Kimbo before he was in the UFC?

rbl site profile image  

8/22/13 9:35 PM by rbl

It will be interesting to see how they promote him now, considering the UFC and Bellator have both basically said he's boring. Especially Dana, how do you sell a PPV featuring "the most boring fighter in MMA history"?

time traveling 12er site profile image  

8/22/13 5:32 PM by time traveling 12er

Context buddy. It's not the fact that they're trying to keep Eddy that's pissing people off, it's how they're doing it. They said if Eddy wanted to leave they'd let him leave, then when he did try to leave they went back on that and matched. On top of that they also tried some dirty stuff by sending his lawyer a different contract hoping Eddie wouldn't read his and just sign it based on his lawyers recommendation.In the case of Askren it's not that they're just letting him go. They're letting him go as active champ and suggesting they're doing it because he's boring. This is also after saying how great he was and also crowing about how legit they are.But you probably already knew all this.

CindyO site profile image  

8/22/13 5:00 PM by CindyO

Hahahahahaha!!! There you are! I was wondering what your thoughts were about this sitch=) In this case, Bjorn reminds me of the girl who tries to break up with the boy first because she knows the boy doesn't want to be with her anymore! So Bjorn is trying to act like it is HIS call when in fact Ben simply doesn't wan... well, you get it:) His feewings must be hurt.   Cindy

JStrongMMA site profile image  

8/22/13 4:11 PM by JStrongMMA

They don't know what the fuck they are doing. I am not shitting on them either because I want them to do well. Over the past 6 months they have basically told the MMA community through their actions "we are a sinking ship...we don't know what we are doing and we are desperate. "

Flexo site profile image  

8/22/13 4:04 PM by Flexo

Funny how easily they'll let their champ go, yet waste Eddies prime holding him hostage.

JStrongMMA site profile image  

8/22/13 1:39 PM by JStrongMMA

I agree and he finished 6 of his 12 fights. People that are saying he is a lay n pray point fighter are probably making assumptions and never actually watched him fight. That or they don't enjoy elite level grappling/wrestling.