Now that Demetrious Johnson has won the ONE Championship Flyweight Grand-Prix, and Ben Askren is 1-2 in the UFC, it is time to ask who won the trade between the two? Was it ONE for acquiring Johnson? Or was was the UFC for obtaining Askren?
Who won the Ben Askren-Demetrious Johnson trade?
Frank Hyden MMATorch Columnist
I think both organizations won. This was mutually beneficial and seems like the ideal trade. ONE got one of the best flyweights of all-time and can legitimately claim their champion can beat anyone else. The UFC won because Askren was a bigger draw than Johnson, even if he never draws a dime for them again. Askren won because he got some of that UFC money, and Johnson won because he’s working for an organization that values and respects him more than the UFC did. If I had to pick, I’d say the UFC won because Askren brought some pop to the division and is also yet another highly heralded outsider who’s underperformed in the UFC, thus boosting their credibility.
Sean Covington MMATorch Contributor
It was definitely ONE. ONE got one of the G.O.A.T.s when they acquired Demetrius Johnson. Ben Askren has been great for promotion and hyping up fights but as of right now, in the UFC, he is a loser! Askren has to have a rematch with Robbie Lawler and win it to prove it wasn’t a fluke. Regardless of if that fight happens, Ben Askren has only a couple more strikes left in the UFC before he’s cut. Give him Woodley, let Ben prove his wrestling against a wrestler. Maybe Askren can move to a different weight class. Whatever Ben Askren does he better do it fast and it better work or he will be asking us paper or plastic the next time we see him.
Robert Vallejos MMATorch Managing Editor
ONE received the better fighter, in-turn the UFC acquired three fights were much more marketable than they had any right to be. Yes the UFC deserves criticism for their inability to make a star out Johnson, but the harsh truth is that the relationship between the two was over. It is not a galaxy brain take to realize that without Askren, BMF would not be a thing. The experiment may be over, but it is difficult to say that UFC regrets trading Johnson for Askren.
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