Bellator champ Ben Askren not changing his style to suit fans’ demands

Unbeaten welterweight Ben Askren has a message for his critics – if you don’t like the way he fights, change the channel or get used to it.

Askren is one of MMA’s most effective grapplers, honing his uncanny ability to take opponents down and control them from above as an Olympic-level wrestler. However, though he’s typically quite active in all positions, Askren’s style hasn’t lead to a ton of finishes in his ten-fight career including his current run of six straight decisions.

“Funky” addressed concern for his approach in a recent interview with MMAWeekly where he referred to his recent title-defense against Douglas Lima, a bout he was showered with boos in.

“My striking has improved tremendously, but that doesn’t mean that I’m going to stand around for 25 minutes and slug it out with someone that has one-punch knockout power. That’s ridiculous. If I wanted to do that I’d go to the sport of kickboxing,” Askren explained. “People neglect the fact that I have a brown belt in jiu-jitsu. I feel like I landed ten times as many punches as I ever have and a lot of them were really, really hard. A lot of lesser men would have rolled over and gave up a Rear-Naked Choke like most of the sissies in MMA.”

A Closer Look at Askren

The 10-0 Askren only has one stoppage under the Bellator banner though a controversial one in nature, as opponent Ryan Thomas denied ever verbally tapping out as the referee had implied was the case.