Bellator welterweight champion Ben Askren has made plenty of news lately.
First, there was last week's infamous fight challenge to Ariel Helwani after the reporter expressed his (very valid) opinion that Askren's title defense victory over Douglas Lima was boring.
And now, Askren has decided that getting into a Twitter war with UFC President Dana White sounds like a great idea. Askren fired the first shot, claiming that White is lying about the UFC's inability to issue random drug tests to the 375-plus fighters on its roster.
@BenAskren: The USOC random tests Olympic athletes in all sports. Dana saying testing his fighters would be impossible is a bold faced lie.
White fired back with a shot at Askren's much-maligned fighting style.
@DanaWhite: when ambien can't sleep it takes Ben Askren. The most boring fighter in MMA history. I would rather watch flys f*ck
Askren, of course, wasn't content to let sleeping dogs lie:
@BenAskren: @danawhite glad you know my name now. Before I was just the bushy haired wrestler.
I respect Askren's decision to air his true thoughts without any worry of the repercussions. It's one of the things that makes him one of the more intriguing fighters in the sport.
But unless Askren wants to spend his entire career in Bellator—and he's previously noted that he'd like to eventually fight in the UFC—he'll want to be very careful about getting into Twitter battles with the president of the company.
White's the kind of guy who can hold a grudge for a long time, and pissing him off will virtually ensure that you're never going to receive a UFC contract offer. He's already stated publicly that he's no fan of your fighting style. Why add extra animosity on top of that?
Askren is a good fighter and a fantastic wrestler. I'd love to see him face off against some of the top guys in the UFC's welterweight division. But that's never going to happen unless Askren starts thinking about the future instead of saying what he's feeling at the moment.