Ben Askren’s time in MMA may be over once again.
Back in 2017, Askren retired from the sport after he defended his ONE Championship welterweight title. He said he had nothing else to prove as he wanted to show he was the best in the world.
But, a rare trade to the UFC got him out of retirement, at least for one year. His time in the UFC has had mixed results with a controversial submission win over Robbie Lawler, followed by a five-second knockout loss to Jorge Masvidal and most recently a submission loss to Demian Maia. Now, after going 1-2 in the UFC, Ben Askren is thinking about retiring from the sport once again.
“I mean retirement is definitely something I’m considering. I’d be lying to you if I said I was not,” Ben Askren said on Ariel Helwani’s MMA Show. “It is a time-cost analysis. I have a lot of things I want to do in my life. I’m a really busy guy. I have a lot of things I am passionate about and love. Not training specifically, but to and from setting stuff up, I spend 30 hours a week on MMA related stuff. Can I place my time better somewhere else is definitely a thought process that crosses my mind.
“That being said, two more things if I may. All I wanted was an opportunity, that is all I ever said I wanted,” he added. “And, I got my opportunity, so it would be hard to be bitter or disgruntled in any way because I had the opportunity I wanted to and I have not been able to execute on that opportunity and that is on me. That is kind of one thought process.
The other thought process is, part of me wants to fight more. I thought I was doing really well in the Demian Maia fight… Part of me knows I can compete at this level,” he continued. “Demian Maia is a guy who has fought for a world title in multiple weight classes and only losses in the last five-plus years are to the three guys, Marty [Kamaru Usman], Colby [Covington] and Tyron [Woodley]. So, I guess that is something I need to sit and think about and what is next for me.”
Ben Askren says he needs time to sit down with his family and won’t lean one way or the other for now. Yet, he knows his path to a title shot is long and one he may not want to go down, especially because he says he doesn’t love the sport.
Do you think Ben Askren retires?
This article first appeared on BJPENN.COM on 10/28/2019.