Undefeated welterweight Ben Askren gives his own theory on why he never got the chance to fight in the UFC.
Undefeated welterweight fighter Ben Askren fought in many major MMA organizations around the world, except for the UFC, which is a disappointment for some. Specifically, personalities such as Frankie Edgar and Joe Rogan feel that Askren would have been a great addition to the roster.
It is believed that one of the reasons why Askren was never signed by the UFC was because of his publicized rift with company president Dana White. During one Twitter exchange in 2012, Askren criticized White for not having random drug testing at the time, to which the brash UFC executive had quite a harsh response:
The USOC random tests Olympic athletes in all sports. Dana saying testing his fighters would be impossible is a bold faced lie.
— Ben Askren (@Benaskren) April 16, 2012
— Dana White (@danawhite) April 16, 2012
In July 2015, the UFC did begin implementing its stringent drug test policies under the supervision of USADA, which essentially makes Askren’s original point correct. However, he feels that being accurate with his statement is actually the reason why he never set foot inside the UFC Octagon.
“It was so obvious that Dana stood behind all these lame-ass excuses of, ‘He’s not experienced enough, he’s not good enough, he’s too boring, blah, blah, blah, blah.’ They were all lies,” Askren said on a recent appearance on The MMA Hour (via MMA Fighting). “Every single one of them was a lie, because he didn’t want to tell the real story, and that’s because he’s a very petty man who has — he’s got $350 million and a gigantic ego, and he still has no confidence himself.”
“I told them that they could do USADA testing and he said no, then they did it a year later. He can’t put that little detail behind him, so because of that little detail where I made him look bad, he has held a grudge ever since then and he has withheld the fight that fans want to see.”
Askren feels that White has since held a grudge for being called a “liar” and for essentially being proven wrong.
“Fans want to see how I would’ve done in the UFC, and he hasn’t been able to put that together because of a tiny little petty grudge over someone calling him a name.
“And it wasn’t even a bad name. I called him a liar,” he continued. “He was lying. So it was, in fact, true, and he’s been holding that against since 2012. I mean, for God’s sake man, you’ve got $350 million dollars. Don’t you have anything better to do than hold a little bitter grudge? It’s pathetic.”
The 33-year-old Askren retired in November 2017 as the ONE Championship welterweight titleholder, with a record of 18-0 (1 NC and 11 wins by stoppage). But as of late, he has been heavily campaigning for a fight against Georges St-Pierre, which he foresees happening in Montreal in late 2019.