Ben Askren believes that he's been the best welterweight in the world
Santino Honasan on Nov 22, 2017 09:27 PM
"Iíve very long believed, and Iíve good reason to believe, for many years, that Iíve been the best welterweight on the face of the earth. For many years, Iíve believed that."
Friday night, MMA fans will likely see reigning and defending ONE welterweight champion Ben 'Funky' Askren enter the cage for the last time.
In his last hurrah, the unbeaten welterweight king will put his title on the line one last time against former ONE lightweight champion Shinya Aoki in what can easily be called a superfight.
Win or lose, 'Funky' Ben will be putting them up for good, but there is one thing that would make him come out of retirement, if ever.
"I said the one caveat would be if I get to fight for number one."
For years, many have believed that Ben Askren was the best welterweight outside the UFC. His seventeen-fight winning streak and and lengthy title runs in Bellator and ONE Championship are proof of that.
For Askren however, he isn't just the best welterweight outside the Octagon. He's been the best in the world.
"I’ve very long believed, and I’ve good reason to believe, for many years, that I’ve been the best welterweight on the face of the earth. For many years, I’ve believed that."
Ranking lists would dispute that however, and Askren is very much aware of that fact.
"From the rankers’ eyes, I’ve never gotten to prove that. I just looked up the rankings yesterday, I think I was at number five or number six, somewhere in there."
Right now, the number one welterweight in the world, according to a number of ranking lists, is UFC welterweight champion Tyron Woodley.
Askren added that he wouldn't fight Woodley, a close friend and teammate, but should "The Chosen One" lose his top spot to another 170-pounder and the opportunity to finally find out who the best welterweight in the world is, Askren is all for it.
"If that possibility came up, yeah I would take that because I have felt for many years that I’ve been the best welterweight in the world. I’ve never gotten to prove that in the eyes of others."
Rankings or not, Askren has proven himself to be an elite welterweight. Friday night, Askren takes on an elite challenger in Aoki, and a win over the Japanese MMA legend will no doubt cement his legacy as one of the best to ever do it.
Legends collide as Ben Askren defends his ONE welterweight championship against former ONE lightweight champion Shinya Aoki at ONE: Immortal Pursuit.
Catch the exciting MMA action LIVE on Friday, November 24th, 8:30 PM on S+A channel 23!