[MMA NEWS ARCHIVES]
Three years ago, the world was in turmoil over Ben Askren’s impending UFC arrival, including longtime UFC commentator Joe Rogan. The following article is brought to you in its original, unedited form, courtesy of MMA News Archives.
On this day three years ago …
[ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED OCTOBER 31, 2018, 2:44 PM]
Ben Askren is coming to the UFC and the welterweight division has been officially put on notice.
The former Olympic wrestler who owns an undefeated record while holding multiple world titles will join the UFC roster as part of the successful trade that sent former flyweight king Demetrious Johnson to ONE Championship in his stead.
Askren had long been considered one of the best welterweights on the planet for several years but questions still remained as he had never had the chance to face elite competition in the UFC.
That will all change soon with Askren joining the roster and UFC colors commentator Joe Rogan says everyone needs to be careful because the game has just changed.
“Everyone’s having problems,” Rogan said on his podcast of Askren’s coming to the UFC. “There are a lot of struggling mothers if Ben Askren gets his hands on you. You say to yourself ‘why can’t I get up?’
Rogan has been praising Askren for some time, and now he’s ready to see how the former two-time NCAA champion rivals the best of the best in the UFC.
Although he has never fought inside the Octagon before, Rogan warns anyone who questions Askren’s credentials, as a deep dive into his record will show he has faced competition from quality and dominated virtually anyone he has faced in his career.
“There’s a reason he’s undefeated and he hasn’t been hit in multiple fights,” Rogan said of Askren. “I had it on the podcast because I wanted people to know about it. I was a huge fan of Ben Askren when he was the Bellator champion.
“If you look at his fights in Bellator against [Andrey] Koreshkov and [Douglas] Lima – Lima is a beast and he just dominated it. Lima fucks people up, Lima is a dangerous and dangerous cat and Ben Askren was like “Oops, you’re on your back again, you can’t get up and you get kicked”. It’s just another caliber of wrestling.
Rogan has long said that wrestling is the best basis for athletes looking to transition to mixed martial arts and an argument could be made that Askren’s wrestling game is on another level, even compared to the best fighters in the world. .
“I’ve said it many times, it’s the most important skill for MMA. It’s wrestling, ”Rogan said. “It dictates where the fight takes place. If you want to get up the guy can’t take you down Chuck Liddell’s way and if you want to go down to the ground you dictate where the fight takes place. If you are a senior wrestler this is the best base for MMA. I really believe it.
Askren hasn’t booked his UFC debut, but said on Wednesday he hopes to make his first appearance inside the Octagon in early 2019, between January and March.
What do you think of Ben Askren’s coming to the UFC? Sound off in the comments and let us know!