Former UFC welterweight contender Ben Askren isn’t a fan of the UFC 256 title showdown between Kamaru Usman and Gilbert Burns.
It’s safe to say that “Funky” is one of the most outspoken figures in recent MMA history, and while his time with the Ultimate Fighting Championship didn’t quite go to plan, he still knows how to rile people up on social media.
After it was confirmed that Usman will be defending the Welterweight Championship against Burns later this year, Askren didn’t hold his tongue.
Least watched title fight in UFC history https://t.co/BAFEi7GCF8
— Bionic Ben (@Benaskren) September 1, 2020
“Least watched title fight in UFC history”.
Askren hasn’t fought since retiring in the wake of his submission loss to Demian Maia last year, whereas Usman recently defended his title for the second time when he beat Jorge Masvidal on Fight Island.
While Askren wants to let his voice be heard regarding how he feels about other fighters, he also acknowledges that he could’ve done a few things differently in his own career.
“The one thing I think I would have changed if I could go back, I didn’t ever think I was going to fight until 2019,” Askren told a fan on Twitter. “I never thought that would be the case. I thought I’d be retired way before. I never really had a great jiu-jitsu coach until really the end of my career when I found Marc Laimon. I really enjoyed him.
“But before that, there was really a mix of different jiu-jitsu coaches at [Roufusport] and I think that my potential to choke people out was untapped,” Askren continued. “I was the best pinner in the modern era of college wrestling and I think if I would have went to work with say the [John] Danaher Death Squad or Marcelo Garcia, I could have really tapped into that at a much higher level,” Askren said. “But at the same time, I really liked being coached by Duke [Roufus], that was going well and I always thought, hey I’m good enough on the ground, I need to work on the striking end of the takedowns. I always thought hey I’m going to be done in a couple of years and then it just ended up so happening that I fought until effing 2019.
“If I would have put some more time into jiu-jitsu, I think I could have gotten better choking people,” Askren concluded. “Hey that’s how it goes sometimes. That’s what I would have done a little bit differently had I been able to go back and do it again.”
What do you think of this dig from Ben Askren?