Exclusive – Ben Askren Encourages Tony Ferguson to Retire, Says Paddy Pimblett ‘Doesn’t Seem to Be That Good’

Askren offered his take on Ferguson's seventh straight loss inside the Octagon at UFC 296

Ben Askren
Courtesy of @UFCNews on X

Former Bellator MMA and ONE world champion Ben Askren believes it’s time for Tony Ferguson to hang up his gloves.

Stepping into the Octagon at UFC 296 determined to snap a six-fight losing skid, ‘El Cucuy’ instead extended his winless streak, suffering a fairly decisive unanimous decision defeat at the hands of Paddy Pimblett. Everyone assumed that with another loss, Ferguson would walk away from the sport, but that does not appear to be the case.

Speaking with James Lynch in a MiddleEasy exclusive interview, Askren was left dumbfounded by Tony Ferguson’s strategy against Pimblett, a fighter he doesn’t appear to think too highly of. 

“He says he wants to keep fighting,” Askren said. “Is it a monetary thing where he wants to keep fighting for money? I don’t know, but Paddy does not seem to be that good. He really doesn’t. And Tony, he just couldn’t get off his back. I don’t know what his plan was. He is a wrestler. He grew up wrestling. He knows how to get up. That’s folk-style wrestling, but he chose to be on his back for the entirety of the second and third rounds, right?

“It’s like, dude, get up. Maybe even take him down. Paddy is not an elite wrestler. You should be able to go get a takedown on this dude. Make it happen.”

Tony Ferguson is on the Cusp of Making UFC History

At one time, ‘El Cucuy’ was on a 12-fight win streak with victories over the likes of Josh Thomson, Edson Barboza, Rafael dos Anjos, Anthony Pettis, and Donald ‘Cowboy’ Cerrone. Following an especially brutal loss to Justin Gaethje at UFC 249, Ferguson has never quite been the same, now losing seven straight dating back to 2020.

“His trajectory is so insane,” Askren added. “He was like, 13-0, or whatever the hell he was, and now he’s 0-7. It’s like, yeah, you need to be done, buddy.”

Only one other fighter, former two-division champion BJ Penn, has ever lost seven fights in a row. With one more loss, ‘El Cucuy’ would hold the UFC record for most consecutive losses in the promotion’s 30-year history. 

Watch the full exclusive interview below:

Published on December 21, 2023 at 10:39 pm
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