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Scott Coker not interested in Ben Askren one-off: ‘I want fighters that are going to be here fighting’

One Championship: Dynasty of Heroes Photo by Suhaimi Abdullah/Getty Images

Former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) welterweight title contender Rory MacDonald, who transitioned to the ranks of Bellator MMA in summer 2016, has been negotiating his next fight for the Paramount Network.

Unfortunately for all parties involved, said negotiations have taken place with former Bellator MMA welterweight champion Ben Askren, and not longtime matchmaker Rich Chou or promotion president Scott Coker.

“Ben, I don’t really think wants to fight,” Coker told the combat sports media in the wake of Bellator 198 last weekend in Chicago (via MMA Junkie). “I think he wants to fight one more fight and be done with it. That’s what I understand.”

Askren retired from mixed martial arts (MMA) last fall, following his final championship title defense — a technical knockout win over PRIDE FC import Shinya Aoki — under the ONE Championship banner in Singapore.

I guess this dream opponent wasn’t returning his phone calls.

“We’ve got a big fight for (Michael Page) coming up in London,” Coker continued. “We’ve got a big fight for (Jon) Fitch and (Paul) Daley in San Jose on May 12. We’re going to keep these guys busy. I want fighters that are going to be here fighting.”

Like this guy.

MacDonald, 28, is 2-0 for Coker and Co. to improve to 2-4 overall. Askren, 33, is 18-0 (1 NC) and hasn’t competed for Bellator MMA since his technical knockout win over Andrey Koreshkov in July 2013.

Right around the same time he started doing this.

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