Ben Askren thinks Sean O’Malley ‘needs to grow up’ because he left UFC 252 on a stretcher

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Sean O’Malley didn’t protest what some considered a quick stoppage in his loss to Marlon Vera this past weekend at UFC 252. Instead, he laid on the mat writhing in pain.

An apparent left foot injury suffered during the fight led to O’Malley leaving the octagon on a stretcher. And the way Ben Askren sees it, that was a show of weakness from the 25-year-old prospect.

“He wanted to just be out of there for whatever reason,” Askren said Monday while stepping in to co-host ESPN’s “DC & Helwani.”

When it was brought up that the reason probably was O’Malley being in a lot of pain, Askren nearly blew a gasket.

“It’s a fist fight! Deal with that sh*t!” Askren yelled. “Deal with it! It’s a fist fight!”

Askren calmed down and continued.

“I’m saying he shouldn’t have done that. It’s a fist fight,” he said. “Yes, (O’Malley) was in pain obviously. Listen, if you don’t have the expectation that you’re gonna be in pain when you get into a fist fight, you’ve got some bad expectations.”

The full extent of O’Malley’s injury remains unknown. According to ESPN, an X-ray on his ankle/lower leg revealed no fractures, but an MRI would still be needed once swelling subsides to reveal any possible ligament or tendon tears, as well as in his knee.

Despite this, Askren still heavily criticized O’Malley for even allowing himself to be taken off on a stretcher. The former Bellator and ONE Championship title holder considers it a sign of weakness.

“If they tried carting me out because of an ankle injury, I would’ve fought someone over that,” Askren said. “You’re not putting my ass on a stretcher because I got an ankle injury. I got one other good leg, and I’m gonna hop all the way to the back. Leave me the eff alone. I think he needs to grow up. …

“It’s part of growing up. In life, you have failures, you have struggles. You’re gonna learn from them. Obviously he hasn’t lost a fight to this point, so he probably hasn’t experienced those really hard things and really, at this point, embarrassment also. He was building himself up and got his ass kicked by ‘Chito’ Vera. He’s probably a little embarrassed by that, as well. Hey, that’s part of it. Get up, rub some dirt on it, hop yourself to the back.”

UPDATE: O’Malley’s head coach, Tim Welch, responded to Askren’s criticism Tuesday, clarifying that his fighter was forced to use the stretcher.

He was trying to say I don’t need a stretcher like three times, they enforced it.


Original Article posted by Simon Samano

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