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Katie

Askren loses to Maia by submission

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He has to retire now. He just can't cut it at the very elite level of MMA, that was clear after the Robbie fight. All those years of competing in Asia against lower level opposition gave him zero incentive to build up his MMA skillset beyond wrestling. It turns out that being painfully slow, 35, zero stand up game and eating shots for fun (HEAD MOVEMENT) is not a great combination. 

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Askren always talks about putting on a good show, and this was for sure a good fight, but will probably be his last in the UFC.  I'm pretty sure one of the primary rules of showmanship is to always leave the crowd wanting more.  I don't want any more Askren MMA.  He should have shut it down after the ONE Championship thing.  He would have gone out a legend and a fun "what if" discussion  instead of...well...you get my point.

Edited by matts1w

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The thing is, as bad as his standup is, he was getting the better of Maia. Why not use your wrestling in reverse and stick with what’s working. No...let’s go do some funk with a BJJ legend, who eats black belts for breakfast. SMH. Ask ten should hang it up. Breaks my heart but he’s too one dimensional to be relevant in the big leagues.

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12 minutes ago, rod_frufit said:

Indeed it's time to hang it up....but, if he would have boxed Maia, he would have won.  Going to, and staying on the mat was a bad decision.

They sold the fight as a matchup between two great grapplers. The only reason anyone watched was to see them on the mat. If he kept it on the feet it would have been the same as a loss for his career. 

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Ben Askren is a great wrestler but only a good fighter. I agree that it’s time to move on. He made a lot of money and had a great run beating average competition-a very smart strategy that likely extended his career. 
He Is a good collegiate wrestler not a good Freestyle/Greco wrestler.

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Askren an Olympian back when differences between free + folk even more marked. His style better for folk than it is for free. His results against U.S. competition do look pretty good?

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Ben was too confident in his ground game. His background is wrestling not grappling or jj. A true wrestler must fight in top position. I remember the fight Romero vs Jacare where Romero had used his wrestling in the right direction and won the fight. Another example of excess of confidence is DC vs Miocic where Cormier change a very effective wrestling strategy and prefer a striking battle.

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2 hours ago, Abdullahgadzhi Khuzin said:

Sad news, but Askren destoyed him in wrestling skills 

Unfortunately, wrestling skills with s small amount of submission technique rarely are enough to led to a tap out or KO.  Even in the early day’s of MMA wrestlers looked awkward in what came next after gaining ground control and usual won by decision do to ground domination with some strikes in their rather than a clear KO or submission.  In today’s MMA the longer the fight last the more opening these striker and submission grapplers will have to end it and Askren’s still raw enough to allow those openings to develop.  

 

This was Askrens first real competitive UFC “fight” considering the Lawler fight was a chaotic mess that he somehow survived enough to find a way on top and the Masvidal fight was too quick for any skills to show.  And from what I’m reading it sounds like he honestly held up decently well against a prior title contender who may have just earned a top contender fight with that win.   So in terms of being competitive I wouldn’t say he needs to hang it up, but with his age and lack of other skills his ceiling has mostly been reached in the UFC.  The rest of his fight are likely gate keeper fights against young up and coming fighter who are fine engaging in verbal battles with the brash elder statesman like Askren.  Very similar to how Sonnon was after he had peaked out.  
 

Sounds like the stand up was ugly for both guys but Maia has a little more precision training.  The wrestling was where Askren took control, but the grappling scrambles is where Maia took that control back.  Maia’s been “out skilled” in several of his fights, but the moment a fighter slips up and lets him implement BBJ techniques the rest of the round just turns into a battle to survive.  The dudes a high level BBJ players who’s also developed the skills to remain defensive enough to aviod too much punishment against other fighting discipline until his moment arrives. 

Edited by MadMardigain

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Sad news, but Askren destoyed him in wrestling skills 
According to pro mma fighters and coaches Wrestling is the most important skill and background in mma. Overall, Wrestling has 28 ufc champions bjj 17 and boxing 12. The point is that non all the wrestlers, grapplers or kickboxers are successful in mma. In ufc Askren was defeated by two former wrestlers and one world bjj champion. In my opinion the last fight was lost by a terrible strategy.

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Askren’s idea was that he could be the best fighter in the world with incredible folkstyle-based grappling, good submissions, and rudimentary striking. That idea now appears to be wrong. 

Unfortunately for Askren, he’s probably too old to become a well-rounded fighter. His world championship ambitions are, in all likelihood, over.

Final story is probably this: His personal style allowed him to dominate NCAA wrestling, but was not enough at the highest levels of freestyle and MMA.

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10 minutes ago, Katie said:

Askren’s idea was that he could be the best fighter in the world with incredible folkstyle-based grappling, good submissions, and rudimentary striking. That idea now appears to be wrong. 

Unfortunately for Askren, he’s probably too old to become a well-rounded fighter. His world championship ambitions are, in all likelihood, over.

Final story is probably this: His personal style allowed him to dominate NCAA wrestling, but was not enough at the highest levels of freestyle and MMA.

He literally made the Olympic team the only time he tried too and now Is the head coach of big ten RTC I think you would have trouble finding to many people that don’t think askren reached some of the highest levels of freestyle and starting his mma career 18 19 and 0 is a much higher level of mma then 99.9 percent of fighters ever reach.  While I agree it’s probably time to hang it up in the fighting , he’s had a career most would kill for 

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27 minutes ago, Antitroll2828 said:

He literally made the Olympic team the only time he tried too and now Is the head coach of big ten RTC I think you would have trouble finding to many people that don’t think askren reached some of the highest levels of freestyle and starting his mma career 18 19 and 0 is a much higher level of mma then 99.9 percent of fighters ever reach.  While I agree it’s probably time to hang it up in the fighting , he’s had a career most would kill for 

Winning the US Olympic Trials is a fantastic accomplishment, and I certainly respect Askren as a wrestler.
 

However, when I referred to the “highest levels of freestyle,” I was talking about world and Olympic championships. 
 

As far as I know, Askren never medaled, and never wrestled for a medal. He just never got to that level.

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2 hours ago, MadMardigain said:

And from what I’m reading it sounds like he honestly held up decently well against a prior title contender who may have just earned another title shot with the win.   So in terms of being competitive I wouldn’t say he needs to hang it up, but with his age and lack of other skills his ceiling has mostly been reached in the UFC.  The rest of his fight are likely gate keeper fights against young up and coming fighter who are fine engaging in verbal battles with the brash elder statesman like Askren.  Very similar to how Sonnon was after he had peaked out.  

Good post but you should also mention that Maia is 41 years old and on his way out. A competitor like Askren hopefully realised he isn't on the level he thought he was against these guys so there's no point staying in the game if he can't be the best. If he does decide to continue I at least hope that he doesn't fight any good strikers because he's taken enough brain damage from these 3 fights alone for a lifetime of fighting and doesn't need any more. 

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I just don't know if freestyle was a huge priority for Ben? Seemed like he was willing to dip his toes in and give it a go but I don't think RTC and sponsorship money money was really a thing back then and he was ready to move on and earn a living doing MMA. It kind of feels like Bo and maybe Suriano will go down a similar path, I dunno.

Would love for ESPN to bring in Askren to be the color commentator at NCAAs with Robles.

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16 minutes ago, The Genius said:

Good post but you should also mention that Maia is 41 years old and on his way out. A competitor like Askren hopefully realised he isn't on the level he thought he was against these guys so there's no point staying in the game if he can't be the best. If he does decide to continue I at least hope that he doesn't fight any good strikers because he's taken enough brain damage from these 3 fights alone for a lifetime of fighting and doesn't need any more. 

Yes Maia is likely on his last title run and I doubt he makes it all the way this time either. His longevity has been helped by avoiding a lot of striking damage in most fights, but the body can only go so long at a high level.  I’d say his next loss will likely set up a final retirement fight which I’m guessing he hopes to have in Brazil.  

Edited by MadMardigain

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39 minutes ago, pamela said:

I just don't know if freestyle was a huge priority for Ben? Seemed like he was willing to dip his toes in and give it a go but I don't think RTC and sponsorship money money was really a thing back then and he was ready to move on and earn a living doing MMA. It kind of feels like Bo and maybe Suriano will go down a similar path, I dunno.

Would love for ESPN to bring in Askren to be the color commentator at NCAAs with Robles.

I never saw any indication that Askren didn’t put forward his best effort leading up to the 2008 Olympics.  IMO he just wasn’t good enough.

(No disrespect, of course. He’s an Olympian and 2x Hodge winner.)

Edited by Katie

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Yah, I agree that he wasn't good enough to win at the time. It's just too bad that the incentives weren't there for him to stick with freestyle and keep developing. Dake and Taylor could have peaced out after 2016 and had a similar story if they didn't have the type of support structure that's available to postcollegiates now. What could have been.

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10 minutes ago, pamela said:

Yah, I agree that he wasn't good enough to win at the time. It's just too bad that the incentives weren't there for him to stick with freestyle and keep developing. Dake and Taylor could have peaced out after 2016 and had a similar story if they didn't have the type of support structure that's available to postcollegiates now. What could have been.

If he stuck with freestyle, Burroughs would have taken his spot in 2011. 

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I never saw any indication that Askren didn’t put forward his best effort leading up to the 2008 Olympics.  IMO he just wasn’t good enough.

(No disrespect, of course. He’s an Olympian and 2x Hodge winner.)

His style was folkstyle funk, expose your back, spaghetti wrestling.

 

He just couldn't adapt without the funk.

 

 

 

Sent from my moto z3 using Tapatalk

 

 

 

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Askren was one of the most entertaining and creative college wrestlers ever. He was a modern day Wade Schalles. Easily on a top 20 all time list and arguably hovering in rarefied air above that. He gave freestyle a serious go, making the sacrifices required to do so at the time (certainly, there was no financial incentive, to say the least). He made an Olympic team, a rare feat. He has always been a tremendous ambassador to the sport and represented wrestling well in MMA. He started one of the top yourh club programs in the country and has served as formal and informal assistant coach in D1. He now head coaches at an RTC. Askren transitioned to the big leagues too late in his career after having made quite a bit of money in large part for the love of competition, to prove himself. It didn’t work out, but there is no shame in his effort whatsoever. He lost to world-class fighters in a sport where nobody has ever gone undefeated. 
 

I’m a huge fan of Askren and hope others will recognize how much of an asset he has been and continues to be for wrestling. If he calls it a career now, he should rightfully do so with his head held up high. I hope he stays influential in wrestling for a very long time and becomes a D1 head coach at some point in the future. 

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