Loretta Hunt has the story for SI.
"World Series of Fighting had already made me an offer and they called back to reiterate it [after the UFC fell through]," said Askren. "I had two good offers, but I was really considering retirement at this point, because my goal is to be the No. 1 fighter in the world. Outside the UFC, Bellator was the next best place and I was ranked as high as No. 7 when I fought for them. No matter where else I went, I wouldn't reach No. 1. My goal was out the window, so I had to adjust my thinking to my next plan."
Askren's deal with ONE FC is for six fights over two years, he said. He'll make $50,000 guaranteed for his first bout, with another $50,000 in bonus pay should he win. Askren's purses increase for each subsequent bout, should he keep winning.
The deal doesn't require Askren to move (permanently or otherwise) to One FC's home-based region. Part of that confusion stems from a separate deal Askren signed around the same time with Evolve MMA, a state-of-the-art Singapore-based gym that's hosted name fighters from all over the world.
"That's a separate deal," said Askren, who'll remain a member of the Wisconsin-based Roufusport team. "Evolve MMA is sponsoring me and I'll go there and train two weeks before my fights. Their coaches will corner me."
Among those coaches is Heath Sims, former head trainer of Team Quest Temecula, owned by former Pride champion and UFC staple Dan Henderson. Sims is also a 2000 Olympic wrestler, himself. Askren visited Evolve and Sims in 2012 and said the facility's collective of muay Thai coaches and training partners is incomparable.
And to further quash any rumors that Askren has defected from Roufusport, Evolve owner Chatri Sityodtong and team coach Duke Roufus are longtime friends who've previously done business together. In other words, it's all above board and Askren has Roufus' blessing.