Ben Askren is a former Olympic and collegiate wrestler and now currently an undefeated mixed martial artist. He is the former Bellator welterweight champion.
Bellator Welterweight ChampionshipEdit
He defeated Ryan Thomas twice to make it to the finals of the Bellator second season welterweight tournament and he next faced dangerous striker and jiu-jitsu practitioner Dan Hornbuckle in the finals for a chance to face welterweight champion Lyman Good for the belt. He defeated Hornbuckle by dominant decision.
He faced Good for the title in the promotion's third season, defeating him via a dominant unanimous decision in a fight that was considered horrifyingly boring to many. It was, however, dominant. Askren next faced veteran Nick Thompson in a non-title "superfight." He defeated Thompson via unanimous decision and Thompson retired after the bout.
Askren next defended his title for the first time against tournament victor and Strikeforce veteran Jay Hieron, winning via a hard-fought split decision. Askren was vehemently disappointed despite the victory, stating that he wanted to get better and "that wasn't even close" to improving.
Askren next defended his title for the second time against tournament victor and former MFC welterweight champion Douglas Lima. Askren defeated Lima via an easy and dominant unanimous decision.
Askren next defended his title for the third time against striker and judoka Karl Amoussou. Askren dominated Amoussou en route to a bloody physician's stoppage victory between the third and fourth rounds.
Askren next faced the next tournament champion, undefeated Russian striker Andrey Koreshkov. Askren handed Koreshkov his first loss, dominating the Russian en route to a fourth round technical knockout. With the victory Askren's Bellator contract was completed and he became a free agent. He received offers from the UFC and probably several other promotions; meanwhile Bellator said that they wouldn't make him an offer and would let him walk if he wanted to.
Indeed later, in November 2013 on the eve of a Douglas Lima rematch, Askren was released by Bellator and was almost sure to be signed by the UFC.
Outside of BellatorEdit
Askren was offered a WSOF contract but held out for a UFC offer. He called out prospect Rory MacDonald and UFC welterweight champion Georges St. Pierre, declaring he would fight either one for free but he seemed to lean towards the more realistic MacDonald bout for his UFC debut. He vowed that he would retire if he got the fight and lost to MacDonald.
The UFC showed no interest and Askren signed with the Asian One FC promotion blaming an immature Dana White. He immediately began feuding in December 2013 on Twitter with veteran Phil Baroni.
Askren instead signed to make his debut against Bakhtiyar Abbasov defeating Abbasov via an impressive first round arm triangle choke submission near the end of the round.
Askren next signed to fight OneFC welterweight champion Nobutatsu Suzuki.
- Ben Askren vs. Ryan Thomas 1 - The fight was the Bellator debut of both men and it was in the quarterfinals of the Season Two welterweight tournament.
- Dan Hornbuckle vs. Ben Askren - The fight was in the finals of the Bellator second season welterweight tournament. The winner received a shot at welterweight champion Lyman Good. Askren came into the fight undefeated and the fight was only Dan Hornbuckle's third loss.
- Ben Askren vs. Nick Thompson - The fight was Nick Thompson's Bellator debut and it was his final mixed martial arts bout. After the fight, Thompson retired.
- Ben Askren vs. Jay Hieron - The fight was for the Bellator welterweight title with Ben Askren defending.
- Ben Askren vs. Douglas Lima - The fight was for the Bellator welterweight championship with undefeated champion Askren defending.
- Ben Askren vs. Karl Amoussou - The fight was for the Bellator welterweight title with undefeated champion Askren defending the title.
- Ben Askren vs. Andrey Koreshkov - The fight was for the Bellator welterweight title with Askren defending; both men came into the fight undefeated. The fight was Andrey Koreshkov's first loss. The fight would also be Askren's final Bellator fight.