MMA Odds and Ends for Friday: Askren Bout Scratched Due To Missed Weight

Ben AskrenThere were a couple fight announcements yesterday, but the biggest news coming out of Thursday night was the fact that the scheduled ONE FC 32 welterweight title bout was cancelled. The bout was set to be a rematch of Ben Askren and Luis Santos, after their bout earlier this year ended in a no contest due to an accidental eye poke. First, Santos missed the contracted weight of 170lbs for the fight, taking the title moniker off their bout. Then Askren offered at catchweight of 190lbs based on a weigh-in the morning of the fight, which Santos refused. The Brazilian only missed weight by two pounds, and we’ve seen plenty of fighters accept fights in similar situations before, but Askren’s background is one of making weight constantly over a grinding wrestling season, so he showed no sympathy for his opponent. The ONE FC champion unleashed a bunch of tweets after the incident, referring to Santos as his ‘garbage opponent’ and talking about being sick of ‘amateur jabronis’ who don’t honor the contracts they sign. ONE FC CEO Victor Cui was also extremely upset with Santos for missing weight and ruining the bout. From his perspective, Askren fights are one of the few times the eyes of the MMA world really focus in on ONE FC, and obviously that did not take place. Instead, Dejdamrong Sor Amnuaysirichoke moved to 6-0 by taking a unanimous decision over the previously undefeated Yago Bryan Farias de Morais (3-1) in a main event where MMA fans couldn’t guess both fighters out of a lineup if their life depended on it. The only other result of note from ONE FC 32 was Kotetsu Boku winning via TKO over Major Overall (and yes, I just wanted to type ‘Major Overall’). As for fight announcements, the UFC made a pair. First, Alex Caceres will be returning to action in an attempt to stop his three-fight losing streak when he takes on Masio Fullen at UFC on Fox 18 in January. this fight has pink-slip derby written all over it, even though Caceres’ losses have come to some quality bantamweights. Caceres should open a solid favorite in the bout, as Fullen was just submitted with ease in his last bout, and Caceres is adept on the ground, particularly in taking his foe’s back. Two weeks prior to that fight, Rob Font will be making his return to the Octagon for the first time since July of 2014. In that debut, Font looked impressive in knocking out veteran George Roop in just over two minutes. Injuries have kept him out of action since, with bouts against Chris Beal and Mitch Gagnon being cancelled over the past 14 months. Font will be taking on another fighter who looked extremely impressive in his last outing. Patrick Williams needed only 23 seconds to dispatch Alejandro Perez in front of Perez’ hometown crowd in Mexico City. That erased some of the memories of Williams’ own highlight reel loss, when he was felled by a flying knee from Chris Beal back in April of last year. Font will open a favorite in this bout, but it will be interesting to see how high the line is given his layoff and Williams’ recent performance.

Written by Brad Taschuk

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