Ben Askren Talks UFC Singapore Bout With Demian Maia
Ben Askren is looking to bounce back from his first career loss, against Demian Maia. However he says if he is unsuccessful, things could be very bad for him.
Askren was traded from ONE to the UFC, in a groundbreaking deal. Following that, he won his UFC debut, against Robbie Lawler, in controversial fashion. Subsequently, he looked to get a better result in his next fight, with Jorge Masvidal. Nevertheless, that bout would be his first career loss, and it would come in the fastest knockout in UFC history.
Now Askren is looking to return against elite grappler Demian Maia, at UFC Singapore. In an interview with Submission Radio, he explained how important it is for him to get a win in this fight. It started with him being asked if a loss would lead him to retire from MMA.
“I’d have to think about it. But man, if I don’t win this fight, I’m knocked way, way, way down the rung. So I don’t think that’s going to happen, but I’m gonna go in there and mix it up, and then after that we’ll have to see where it goes.”
Askren went on to explain how much respect he has for Maia.
“It’s fun, because I’ve been watching Demian for years. I scouted him when Tyron [Woodley] fought him. I actually tried to emulate his style for Tyron to make it as believable as possible. Tyron stopped 27 takedowns, so I think I very adequately emulated Demian’s style for that fight. But yeah, he’s someone I respect a lot.”
Furthermore, he went on, discussing why he thinks this fight is a good stylistic match up.
“His only three losses at 170 are Colby, Marty, and Tyron. Those are all three pretty solid wrestlers. So he does struggle against the best level wrestler. Against other people, he’s really able to impose his will. And so obviously when you look at that recipe, I think that’s something that favors me.”
While Ben Askren is not crazy enough to think a win over Maia earns him a title shot, he is aware that it gets him closer. Moreover, he knows just how detrimental a loss would be in this bout. Subsequently, this makes this bout one of the most consequential of his career.