If Bellator welterweight champion Ben Askren does join the UFC fold in the near future there is at least one fighter that won’t be welcoming him with open arms, former UFC heavyweight champion Josh Barnett.
On Saturday, Barnett will make his first appearance inside the Octagon since defeating Randy Couture for the UFC heavyweight title in March 2002. Following that second round TKO victory Barnett was stripped of the title after he failed his post-fight drug test. Barnett’s drug test revealed the steroids, Boldenone, Nandrolone and Fluoxymesterone.
Barnett will face Frank Mir in the evening's co-main event.
Askren, perhaps wanting to remind fans of Barnett’s past took to twitter and wrote the following after watching the UFC’s recent Countdown to UFC 164:
Love how the Countdown show glanced over the fact Barnett tested positive for 3 banned substances after Couture fight. @Vada_Testing— Ben Askren (@Benaskren) August 28, 2013
That opened the door for the following exchange:
@Benaskren Did I piss in your cherrios or something or do you just like the view from your high chair? Have fun in obscurity.— Josh Barnett (@JoshLBarnett) August 28, 2013
@JoshLBarnett Lol I know it doesn't matter to you, but I can look at myself in the mirror and be ok with choices. In 20 years you will— Ben Askren (@Benaskren) August 28, 2013
@JoshLBarnett have a very hard time doing the same.— Ben Askren (@Benaskren) August 28, 2013
@Benaskren It must feel terrible knowing that without casting insults my way nothing you say matters. You're nearly invisible. Rough life.— Josh Barnett (@JoshLBarnett) August 28, 2013
@Benaskren Lastly, go fuck yourself you high & mighty prick. If you want to be famous just come run your mouth next time you see me.— Josh Barnett (@JoshLBarnett) August 28, 2013
@JoshLBarnett maybe we will end up in the same locker room Saturday :)— Ben Askren (@Benaskren) August 28, 2013
Askren will most likely be in the corner of his teammate Anthony Pettis when he faces Benson Henderson in the main event at UFC 164 on Saturday, after this exchange it’s likely that Pettis and Barnett will not booked into the same locker room in Milwaukee.
It should be noted that Barnett was popped for steroids following his release from the UFC. He was found to have a metabolite of the anabolic steroid Drostanolone in his system prior to a scheduled bout with Fedor Emelianenko in 2009.
That positive test and the cancellation of the fight, essentially spelled the end of the Affliction fight promotion.
Barnett was also found to have PED’s in his system prior to a 2001 UFC bout against Bobby Hoffman. Barnett received no official punishment for that positive test.
Knowing what we do about the strong-willed personalities of these two fighters, don’t expect apologies and bro-hugs if and when they do meet in person.
This may be developing into another one of those headaches that UFC president Dana White says he does not need.