Former Bellator welterweight champion Ben Askren's debut with his new promotion, One FC, was nothing if not entertaining. Matched against Bakhtiyar Abbasov, the elite wrestler scored a first-round submission win.
The first few seconds, shockingly, saw the Azerbaijani nail a takedown on Askren and take his back. Askren was quick to escape danger and get on top of Abbasov, however, and from there, it was a vintage "Funky" fight. He dominated top position for minutes on end, landed ground-and-pound, advanced through Abbasov's guard and—at four minutes, 21 seconds of the first round—got the tap from a tight arm-triangle choke from side control.
It was Askren's fourth career submission victory and his first since sinking in a Japanese Necktie against Ryan Thomas in his Bellator debut at Bellator 14. The win advances his record to a perfect 13-0 and is his third stoppage in a row. The win over Abbasov sets him up for a title fight with One FC's welterweight champion, Nobutatsu Suzuki, a Japanese knockout artist sporting an 11-1 record.
While the fight itself was enjoyable, there was a great deal of humor during and immediately after the bout. Throughout the bout, as Askren was delivering punches from top position, the referee made a point of asking Abbasov if he wanted to give up:
Yuji Shimada reffing Askren fights is glorious. Constantly asking his opponent if he gives up while Askren is pounding on him.— Brad Taschuk (@bradtaschuk) May 30, 2014
The post-fight interview saw Askren slight his opponent and cut a promo inviting Suzuki to simply give up his belt and avoid a beating—all while the Singapore crowd sat by and silently listened to Askren's smack talk. That was followed immediately by One FC color commentator Jason Chambers dropping a cuss word or two while incorrectly believing himself to be off air:
ONE FC color guy Jason Chambers had no idea he was live on the air after the Askren interview and cursed. Hilarious.— Marc Raimondi (@marc_raimondi) May 30, 2014
There is no set date for the upcoming Suzuki vs. Askren bout, so stick with Bleacher Report for more details as they become available.
Like the new article format? Send us feedback!