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Ben Askren Officially Announces His Retirement From Mixed Martial Arts

Just 8 months after coming into the UFC with a bang, declaring himself the greatest fighter on the planet, and promising he’d prove that to be true very quickly – convincing half of mixed martial arts fandom that he may just be right in the process – Ben Askren has announced his retirement from the sport of MMA.

Askren’s UFC career may just go down as the most bizarre run in company history. I don’t see how it couldn’t. Maybe CM Punk has a better claim for that title, but I don’t know – he came in as maybe the hottest prospect of my lifetime, people legitimately believed thought Askren was gonna bring Georges St-Pierre outta retirement when he debuted…and then…he just…kinda…didn’t.

Obviously, “Funky” Ben Askren’s one and only victory came over Robbie Lawler under sorta shady circumstances, where he was DUMPED onto his head instantly…

…and then choked Lawler out, buuuuuuuuut Lawler wasn’t out…

Following that controversial finish, I’d say Ben Askren vs Jorge Masvidal was EASILY the most anticipated fight of the Summer thanks to the antics/pre-fight shit talk from both parties, and we all know who that one went…

Just recently, and finally, I suppose, Ben had a bout with world class grappler and UFC veteran Demian Maia – where MANY expected him to succeed and get back on track – but once again came up on the wrong side of that one…

Ben’s career will likely be defined by these three performances, which is a shame, given the nineteen victories and multiple world championships he secured prior to his UFC debut, but I’ll always remember Askren as a guy who brought TONS of eyes to the sport and made shit fun for a while. More than anything, Askren made shit fun. When I interviewed him way back in May for My Mom’s Basement…

…I was put in touch with Ben through a mutual friend of ours, and within 12 hours of being placed in a group chat with the former Olympian, I was sitting at a Chiptole in New York City with him, his wife, Kyle Snyder, and a few other bad motherfuckers just chompin it up about MMA and Bitcoin, weirdly. He sorta blew me away with how laid back and welcoming he was, and I’ll always appreciate that as well.

Thanks for the fun, Ben! Hell of a career!