Ben Askren made his UFC debut at UFC 235, defeating former UFC Welterweight Champion Robbie Lawler by first round submission.
Former UFC Interim Welterweight Champion Colby Covington says Askren had a bad performance at UFC 235, even suggesting that Askren should hand his Hodge Trophy over to Lawler.
“How could you be impressed?” Covington told MMA Fighting. “Ben Askren, he got dropped on his head. Let’s be honest, he should give his Hodge Trophy, that wrestling trophy, to Robbie Lawler, because Robbie Lawler took him down more times than he took Robbie down. And if it wasn’t for Herb Dean saving his life, he was going to get his head knocked into the first row. So the guy needs to run that back with Robbie Lawler and actually get a UFC win before he can start talking about the top of the mountain. He hasn’t done anything in this sport. He’s a 36-year-old virgin. A little science school nerd. So I don’t really have anything to say. He’s a bum. He can’t even throw a punch.”
Controversy reared it’s ugly head at UFC 235 because it seemed like Lawler didn’t tap or go out cold while in the bulldog choke from Askren.
Askren has also shut down a potential rematch with Lawler, which leads Covington to believe that Askren fears Lawler.
“It shows how scared he is, how much fear is in him,” Covington said. “The fact that you don’t want to run that back and prove to the fans and prove to the people that run this sport that you’re better than that guy. It was a fluke. You didn’t win that fight. Robbie was still in it. [Askren] was gassed within the first two minutes of the fight. Gassed out. Like, didn’t know what to do, literally concussed on day street. So if you don’t want to run that back, then what are you doing here? You’re not out here to prove that you’re the best. You’re just trying to look for easy matchups and he’s just looking for that good payday and then he’s going to ride off into the sunset, because he’s a 36-year-old virgin. He’s got probably a year or two left of fighting in him. I don’t know if he’ll crack the top five by the time he’s 40. Just being honest.”
The Hodge Trophy, named after Danny Hodge, is awarded to the best NCAA wrestler each year.