Askren on kerfuffle with Usman: I'm under his skin

Tuesday, February 05, 2019

Ben Askren and Kamaru Usman had words backstage following weeks of bitter Twitter quarreling. During a recent appearance on 

“Can you believe Marty put this video out?" asked Askren, as transcribed by Jed Meshew forMMA Fighting. "This video makes him look like a dumb-dumb and it was his camera person that put it out! He is bragging about this and this is what I can’t stand about fighters. Listen, we get that you’re tough. You fight in a cage. I understand that perfectly, but he has to come up to me, you know nothing is going to happen back there, Marty! Why are you getting in my face? You know you’re not gonna risk your main event shot by punching me in the back hallway. Give me a freaking break. I couldn’t fathom why he was trying to act so tough and what he was trying to do or get out of the situation. If it was intimidation, that’s freakin’ laughable. . . Look at his skinny jeans! You can’t be acting tough when you’re in white skinny jeans and a scarf.”

“He wasn’t gonna do nothing because that’s not who he is. He wants to act like he’s this crazy, insane tough guy but I knew him from before and he’s not. He’s smart, he’s reasonable and for whatever reason, this is the persona that he wants to play, that’s he’s this tough, crazy guy who will fight anyone at anytime. It’s just silly and ridiculous. At no point was he ever threatening me.

“Listen, I offered to fight you. I don’t know how else you want to settle this. I thought that was a fair way to settle it. So I thought it was just all around ridiculous.”

“I am under your skin so bad that I say one thing - I said, ‘Am I sitting next to Marty?’ and he got all pissed,” Askren said. “And the funny thing is, he’s not even like, ‘Marty’s not my name, don’t call me Marty.’ . . He’s not even denying that Marty is his name so I don’t even know what he’s mad about! What is he mad about? I’m so far under his skin and so far in his head it’s not even funny.”

Usman challenges Askren's teammate Tyron Woodley for the 170 belt at UFC 235 on March 2. The same night, Askren fights Robbie Lawler. If both Usman and Askren win, a title shot should happen. And if both Usman and Askren lose, the fight should happen too.