Former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) light heavyweight champion Quinton Jackson knew that one of the challenges he would face when signing with Bellator, would be finding an opponent who fans believe has a legitimate chance of busting him like a grape.
Everything else is just a squash.
That could help explain why no one in the mixed martial arts (MMA) community was pinching pennies to save up for a Bellator pay-per-view (PPV) featuring "Rampage" against fellow UFC import Tito Ortiz, who only has one win over the last seven years and can't tie his shoes without getting injured.
From his conversation with MMA Fighting:
"It just didn't look like the fans was into that fight on social media and stuff. It looked like, a lot of times you get like one percent of haters, but that fight had more than one percent, that had like 40 percent haters. Seemed like a lot of people didn't like that fight. You can't let haters stop you, but at the same time you hear it, you see it, I think the haters still would have tuned in just to see what would happen, but they were out there. People don't understand. There's a lot of haters, they say rude things, ‘washed up' and ‘has beens' and stuff like that. You can't let those people get you down. But I know that Tito dodged a bullet, ‘cuz he was getting knocked out, because I knew what was going on with me."
A "Rampage vs. Ortiz" headliner planned for November 2013 was scrapped when Ortiz got injured.
Jackson went on to beat the stuffing out of Joey Beltran, before advancing to the promotion's light heavyweight tournament with a technical knockout victory over Christian M'Pumbu. His next opponent will be former Strikeforce titleholder Muhammed Lawal.
But does he feel pressure to make this a fight the fans want to see?
"Rampage" insists his post-fight scuffle with "King Mo" (watch it) was not an attempt to drum up additional drama for their May 17 showdown. In fact, he tells MMA Fighting he has no beef with Lawal and their shouting match was a product of post-fight adrenaline. Their Bellator 120 co-main event is strictly business (more on that here).
That said, do any fight fans out there want to see it?