Don't let the smiles fool you.
Former Bellator welterweight champion Ben Askren, who now competes for ONE Championship in Asia, is not considering a jump to Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), despite a photo that appeared on social media capturing him getting chummy with UFC matchmaker Joe Silva.
"Funky" explains to Submission Radio:
"The Joe Silva picture, it was just like ... that was the only seat left on bus when I got on. So I sat down and you know, obviously it was kind of awkward so I made the best of a not-so-great situation and kind of had a laugh of it. As soon as I sat down I said ‘if you’re going to make a proposition to me, the answer is no’. I kind of broke the ice right away, right off the bat. There was a lot of banter between everyone. I was talking to Roy Nelson and his wife, they were sitting next to us, Duke [Roufus] and Joe were talking. So you know there was a lot of people sitting there. So it wasn't like he was the only person I had to talk to, fortunately."
The incriminating photo is below:
Keep your friends close...
Askren was a part of the UFC 185 pay-per-view (PPV) event earlier this month to help Roufusport team mate Anthony Pettis. While there was some talk of bringing the Olympic wrestler into the Octagon after Bellator opted to send him packing, UFC President Dana White decided against it.
That bridge was subsequently burned and is in no "Rush" to be repaired.