For a long time in the sport of mixed martial arts, Ben Askren was considered one of the best welterweights in the world. Due to 'Funky' coming to the UFC a bit late , the wrestler missed out on opponents he would've fought.
Despite many disliking him for his wacky, confident, and sometimes overbearing personality, 'Funky' is arguably one of the greatest welterweights of his generation. The fighter has an NCAA Division I background and translated his wrestling expertly over into the octagon.
During a recent interview with James Lynch, Ben Askren mentioned the fighters he would have loved to face in his best years in the cage:
"Any of the top guys from 2012 to 2017 in the UFC at welterweight, I wish I would fight a lot of those guys and I never really got to fight any of them... We [me and Tyron Woodley] never would have fought. Yeah, GSP or Johnny [Hendricks], you know, I fought Robbie [Lawler] but not when he was the title holder, yeah, something like that... Rory [MacDonald] when he was up there."
Georges St-Pierre is a name many fighters wish they could've shared the octagon with, and he is still regarded by most as the greatest welterweight of all time.
Although Robbie Lawler performed admirably against Ben Askren, both athletes were far past their prime by the time they got to lock horns. The same fight years prior would likely have been much better.
Check out what the 38-year-old had to say about his dream fight in the UFC in the video below:
How good was Ben Askren?
'Funky' has a less-than-impressive record in the UFC, collecting 1 controversial win and 2 crushing losses inside the octagon. However, Ben Askren was a force to reckon with in his prime.
Before life in the UFC, the elite wrestler went 18-0, beating some of the best welterweights outside of the UFC and collecting titles in both Bellator and ONE Championship.
With wins over Douglas Lima, Shinya Aoki, and then-unbeaten Andrey Koreshkov and Lyman Good, the grappling prowess of prime Askren would have been a problem for the majority of fighters at 170lbs.