UFC 235: Ben Askren's Controversial Debut

UFC 235: Ben Askren's Controversial Debut

Ben Askren has a chin made out of granite, just ask Robbie Lawler.

The 34-year-old’s UFC debut and unbeaten record almost ended just 20 seconds into his fight when Lawler picked up and dropped Askren on his head after he attempted a takedown. Lawler continued with menacing punches that left Askren bleeding heavily from his left eye.

“It took me a little while to get my bearings after the slam,” Askren said. “I was mostly surprised at how quickly he got me up and down.”

Lawler continued his assault on the former Olympic wrestler, connecting with several significant strikes throughout the next minute. Askren looked out of sorts and was not even attempting to throw any punches or kicks, but was defending himself and catching his breath.

Askren survived the battering and eventually gained position on Lawler with a bulldog choke. Lawler was furious when Dean stopped the bout, insisting he was fine in the choke. Some cage side observers thought Lawler was unconscious. But almost instantaneously, Lawler sprung to his feet and protested the stoppage to Dean.

“I was bleeding all over the place, so I just squeezed as hard as I could,” Askren said. “Everyone is upset with Herb, but he came in and checked on Robbie (in the clinch), and Robbie gave him (no response). As a veteran, that’s on Robbie. That’s not on Herb or me.”

“Dana, is that the best you’ve got? Bring it, baby,” said Askren after his fight.

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