Even before he made his debut earlier this month, Ben Askren has already been calling for a 165-pound division in the UFC. And as time passes, “Funky” remains fervent in the belief that it will happen sooner than later.
Askren was a guest fighter at UFC London over the weekend, where he had a chance to speak with the media about his thoughts on a 165-pound title fight with Khabib Nurmagomedov.
“If there’s some way I could make that happen next, I would make it happen … I don’t think I can, right? I think I’m like one or two fights away from that happening,” Askren said (transcript via MMAjunkie).
The undefeated welterweight is banking on all the possible story angles that can be created from the matchup, which he says would all sell.
“That is something that would be an awesome fight: great storyline, both undefeated, the USA vs. Russia thing always plays,” Askren said. “And then you also got like the best wrestler in MMA type of thing playing. So you would have a whole lot of angles to play. That fight would be a lot of fun.”
Dana White had already shut down the idea of a new weight class multiple times in the past. According to the UFC president, there already are enough weight classes and top management intends to continue to “keep things simple.”
Askren opened his UFC career with a controversial win over Robbie Lawler at UFC 235.