Bellator will release Askren if he gets title shot at GSP


Bellator welterweight champion Ben Askren is currently a free agent. However, Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebeny does not particularly eager to keep him on the roster, and is waiting for the UFC to make an offer that he could then match.

"If Ben's going to go to the UFC, we should speed up that process so he can go fight," said Rebney in August.

"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."

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

Less than a year ago UFC president Dana White tweeted “when Ambien can’t sleep it takes Ben Askren."

While the UFC has had preliminary discussions with Askren's management, no offer has been made.

This week Rebney called up Askren with an unusual offer, one that Askren wants to jump at.

"He just called me and said straight up, 'I think you're the best welterweight in the world,'" Askren said. "I thought, OK, where's he going with this?"

Rebney wondered aloud: "How about I let you go free if you fight GSP?"

"Dana says, 'Don't sing it, bring it.' Sounds good to me,” Askren said. “I'll step in the cage any day of the week. Just tell me when. That would be ideal."

"The reason I got into MMA was to see if I could be the best in the world at it. That's just my personality. So, boom, this is my shot to prove I'm No. 1 in the world. I really think I am No. 1 in the world. I don't think there's anyone that can beat me. This is what I want. It's what I'm looking for.”

“I think on Dana's side, it will work out well. If GSP beats my ass, I think he says, 'See, UFC is much better than Bellator.' I think if I kick GSP's ass, I could be a very good UFC champion. One that sticks around for a while. One that is entertaining to the fans. Because GSP was entertaining, but honestly the last time he had a real finish I was wrestling in the U.S. Open [in 2008]. I hadn't even considered MMA at that point. And his whole shtick. He's quiet. Very little personality. I could put the UFC welterweight division back on the map because no one really, legitimately gave GSP a run for his money."

The last time White mentioned Rebney, his words did not indicate an overwhelming desire to work with Bellator.

"The guy says, 'Yeah, we're going to let him go. Let's just part ways,'" said White. "You ain't f---ing parting ways with him. He's got a matching right and all that bulls---. This guy is a f---ing typical boxing piece of s---. Everybody knows the guy is a s---bag.

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Recent Comments »

thatcpjguy site profile image  

10/11/13 3:09 AM by thatcpjguy

UFC gains nothing now from picking up askren. Smart move on rebney's part as bellator would gain some credibility by having askren jump straight into a title shot.But considering askren is just another Fitch I don't see any reason Dana would consider signing him now. Dana didn't even cave enough to get fedor in the UFC there is zero reason to play rebney's game.

ChaosOverkill site profile image  

10/11/13 2:06 AM by ChaosOverkill

A rival promoter demanding to use the UFC to try and make Bellator better and saying no is a Dicktuck?   Hi Bellatorfan

dannyapodaca site profile image  

10/11/13 2:03 AM by dannyapodaca

If dana doesnt go for this it will be the biggest dicktuck since cre

ChaosOverkill site profile image  

10/11/13 1:29 AM by ChaosOverkill

Bjork tipped his hand when he talked about Askren's style being "not for everyone" or something similar

willienugget site profile image  

10/11/13 1:26 AM by willienugget

I think Ben's in a pretty bad spot here and it's unfortunate. I believe it's highly likely that he waits out the year, signs with UFC, goes 0-2, gets released and then he's not really welcome at Bellator anymore.

willienugget site profile image  

10/11/13 1:26 AM by willienugget


Chris27 site profile image  

10/11/13 12:45 AM by Chris27

So Askren is the best WW in the world according to Bjorn and is unbeaten yet Bjorn is basically saying to Dana please take him? That makes alot of sense.  Bjorn doesnt want Ben, he wants Ben to fight in a title fight cause it would keep Bellators name in the spotlight leading up to the fight and if he wins he can say they built the best WW and top fighters come from Bellator.  If he loses who cares, most fans perception is Bellator is number 2 even though they have good fighters. Bjorn knows he is boring, fans boo all his fights, he is one dimensional and nobody in Bellator is beating him.   Bjorn would much rather Lima be champ, young kid who is flashy with power and striking and knocks people out.  Thats who he would rather see as champ but he knows Ben beats them all with his wrestling. Just funny that Ben is this unbeaten champ who he claims is the best yet he isnt doing everything in his power to sign him.  Why didnt Curran/Chandler become free agents?  Because Bellator wanted them and didnt want them on the open market.  But they dont feel the same about Ben. I think if it happens they will keep him if the UFC doesnt want him but they dont seem all that eager to keep him. 

da Vinci 81 site profile image  

10/11/13 12:31 AM by da Vinci 81

And any casual fan that follows bellator follows the UFC so it's not like Bjorn is fooling anyone by saying the UFC is scared of Askren beating GSP.

da Vinci 81 site profile image  

10/11/13 12:30 AM by da Vinci 81

Sure, but the UFC's argument is that he doesn't deserve one. And they're right. Bellator can prop him up as much as they want but all Dana will point to is his record full of mid-level guys and there's not much even Bjorn can say to argue that. His toughest fight was journeyman jay Heiron who just washed out of the UFC. There's almost zero argument that he should get an immediate shot other than Bjorn saying so.

ChaosOverkill site profile image  

10/11/13 12:14 AM by ChaosOverkill

if they have no interest in re-singning him and their goal was to have Askren prove Bellator's level of fighter they can just keep claiming they are willing to release him but Dana won't agree.   Yes it's silly and dumb but so are casuals