"To retire as UFC champion and to have defended the belt in Japan? Oh man, that would have been perfect. Believe me, I still want to retire as champion. I want to hold the belt once more. I guess if I had won that Jon Jones fight and if the Japan show wasn't next then there would have been a very good chance I would have retired already. It would have been a great time to bow out. But I almost certainly would have stayed around to fight in Japan anyway, to defend the belt. Then if I would have successfully defended it on this [UFC 144] show, I definitely would be retiring - and retiring a very happy man too!"
Former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Light Heavyweight champion Quinton Jackson tells Fighters Only that had he defeated current 205-pound champion Jon Jones at UFC 135 last September, he probably would have walked away from the sport of mixed martial arts (MMA). Unfortunately for "Rampage," he came up short in regaining the title, and was offered a fight against Ryan Bader scheduled for UFC 144 as the promotion heads Far East to Japan on Feb. 26, 2012. Jackson, who has found success outside the Octagon as a movie star and appeared in movies such as the A-Team, has had quite a career in his 14-year tenure but truly rose to fame in "The Land of the Rising Sun" during his stint with PRIDE FC. After defeating Chuck Liddell at UFC 71 to earn the UFC Light Heavyweight title, Jackson lost his strap to Forrest Griffin at UFC 86 a year later, and has been on a quest to get it back ever since. With Brock Lesnar and Nick Diaz announcing their retirements after losses, "Rampage," for one, does not want to go out like that. Can we expect Jackson to vie for the title after a few more wins in the stacked 205-pound division? Or will Ryan Bader derail his goals to retire as champ?