In what will be his first fight under his new Bellator MMA contract, Quinton Jackson is expected to face off against fellow Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) castoff, Chael Sonnen, in the opening round of the promotion's Heavyweight Grand Prix. While still unofficial at this time, "Rampage" isn't thrilled about potentially facing off against "American Gangster" because the former two-time UFC title contender usually prefers to utilize his wrestling as opposed to keeping the fight standing.
"I told my manager that I’m not looking forward to fighting Chael Sonnen,” Jackson said on this week’s episode of “The MMA Hour” (via Flo Combat). “I just fought a leg-humping wrestler. Why would I want to fight another fighter who is strictly known for wrestling?"
The fight he's referring to is his loss against Muhammed Lawal, who wrestled his way to a unanimous decision win over Jackson in his last bout. For “Rampage” — who has voiced his displeasures with wrestlers in the past — it doesn't make sense to have him open up the tournament against a non-striker.
“Why would Bellator want to me against another wrestler right off the bat?” he continued. “Honestly, I would say that wouldn’t be a match up I’d be looking forward to, and I would be upset coming into the Bellator contract fresh off the bat and them giving me a wrestler to be honest. Who wants to see me fight another wrestler, why wouldn’t a promoter have a guy like me who loves to stand and bang and have exciting fights, why would a promoter constantly want to keep putting me with wrestlers?”
Just let ‘em bang, Scott Coker.
Of course, should Jackson get to the next round, he could find himself against a legit striker such as Roy Nelson, Matt Mitrione ... or even Fedor Emelianenko.
That said, since he's already making it publicly-known he prefers a stand up war in his first match up, the powers that be at Bellator could very well grant him his wish. And that means a rematch against this guy could be on the horizon.