Former ONE Championship and Bellator welterweight titleholder Ben Askren has had some pretty heated exchanges with UFC President Dana White in the past. Now that Askren is a member of the UFC welterweight roster, however, many fans believed his relationship with the UFC boss might finally improve.
Speaking to MMAjunkie recently, Ben Askren updated on his relationship with Dana White. He admitted that there are still some lingering issues — though those issues could probably be patched up by a good, old-fashioned face-to-face conversation.
Unfortunately, he and White haven’t had the chance for that yet.
“I think when when one person and another person have a disagreement, the thing you need to do, if you want to have respect for each other, is sit down and have that conversation,” Askren said. “We haven’t been able to do that so far.”
”He’s said nice things (in) the media, but that’s also because I volunteered to do the dirty work,” he added. “I volunteered to switch and be the main event against Robbie (at UFC 233), Robbie said no. I volunteered to fight ‘Marty from Nebraska’ (Kamaru Usman), ‘Marty’ said no. I volunteered to fight dumb Colby (Covington). So he sees the value in what I’m doing, so now he’s being nice.”
For Ben Askren, of course, it’s never been about being best buds with Dana White. He’s only interested in fighting.
“It’s whatever, though,” he said. “What has happened in the past doesn’t just go away. Because of his position, he thinks that’s how it goes. But listen, I’m here to fight people in the cage, not be anyone’s best friend. If we develop a friendship, that’s fine. But I’m here to fight people in the cage.”
Ben Askren also addressed some of White’s previous claims about it him — namely that the former ONE and Bellator champ needed ‘more experience’ before migrating to the Octagon.