Former ONE welterweight champion Ben Askren has officially been traded to the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC). That being said, the undefeated 34-year-old believes that he is well past his physical prime leading into his octagon debut. UFC News Speaking on a recent edition of The MMA Hour, Ben Askren decided to break down his thoughts on the matter. \u201cThe first reason is because nobody retires in time. I mean, you think about who retires during their prime, the number of athletes who do that in any sport is very small. And obviously a sport like golf, where you see Tiger Woods fall off \u2014 well, there\u2019s not really too much damage he could take from that, right? Although when you watch him and he sucks, and you\u2019re like, \u2018God, he used to be so good, but you suck now,\u2019 it\u2019s kind of disconcerting as a fan, right? But then you look at someone like Muhammad Ali, who was literally my favorite athlete of all-time. The punishment he took from sticking around too long past his prime, man, I would have to say \u2014 we can\u2019t prove it, but I\u2019d have to say we could guess it led to a lot of the problems that he had later in his life. \u201cSo we\u2019re in a combat sport, it\u2019s dangerous, and I am definitely not physically at the peak I was, say, four to five years ago. And you know, it\u2019s a slippery slope, because can I still compete with the best in the world? Yeah, of course I can. But you start getting a little worse and a little worse, a little worse. When is that cutoff? \u201cThen the No. 2 reason will be, if you\u2019re competing right, if you\u2019re doing it right, competition should be a very selfish pursuit. When I was younger, athletes\u2019 biographies, I always said I would be done by the time I was 30, because I wanted to be able to give back. I thought I would be coaching, and I am, and I thought I would be a parent, and I am. And there\u2019s a lot of things that I have to do. For example, I didn\u2019t coach anyone for about the last six weeks before my fight at AWA, because this is my time, I need to get ready. And there\u2019s things I miss out in my kids\u2019 life, because this is my time, I have to get ready. So, I guess those are the two main reasons that I kind of set an expiration date for myself.\u201d \u201cThe plan when I was younger was (to retire at) 30. I always said 30. That was the number that I picked, that\u2019s a good number. Honestly, MMA people have kind of gotten confused about how long people should last because of how many people are using PEDs, and obviously that extends male athletes\u2019 peaks. A male athlete\u2019s peak, I believe, should be somewhere between 26 and 30. If we use those PEDs, we can extend it significantly, and that was what MMA fans got used to. \u201cBut being a guy who does not use any of that stuff, like I said, I\u2019m not the same guy I was at 28 physically. Now, technically I\u2019ve gotten better, because I haven\u2019t been doing this MMA thing that long. But physically, I have definitely gotten worse. I\u2019ve passed my peak. And so, when I re-signed my contract with ONE Championship two years ago, I told them straight up, \u2018I\u2019m done. At the end of 2017, I\u2019m done.\u2019 Initially, like I said, I thought it was going to be 30. (But) 33, that\u2019s it.\u201d \u201cYoung guys kind of have this chip on their shoulder of, \u2018I want to prove something,\u2019 right? \u2018I\u2019ve got to prove how tough I am. I\u2019ve got to prove how good I am.\u2019 And man, now as I\u2019m getting older, I think it\u2019s almost sad when guys my age and older still have that chip on their shoulder,\u201d Askren said. \u201cIt\u2019s like almost embarrassing. It\u2019s like, hey, I\u2019ve done what I could do, I\u2019ve accomplished a lot, and now this, especially with wrestling \u2014 if this next generation wants to pass me up, great job. Good for them. \u201cLike, we just had the 2017 U.S. freestyle world team win the world championship for our country, and seeing all those guys have success, kind of passing what I did, man, I was so proud of them. And so I don\u2019t feel like I have that chip on my shoulder anymore, and I haven\u2019t had it for awhile, that chip on my shoulder, \u2018I\u2019ve got to prove myself, I\u2019ve got to show people how tough I am,\u2019 where I might\u2019ve had that when I was a younger guy. I almost see that as a detriment, if I still have that at 33, to my life.\u201d https:\/\/youtu.be\/SHk9Ci-jk60 For more MMA news click here.