Quinton “Rampage” Jackson reminded the MMA world that he’s alive this weekend when he tried to force his way into the cage at Bellator 226 to fight champ champ Ryan Bader. All that was in response to an accidental eye-poke from Bader on Jackson’s good friend Cheick Kongo, ending their heavyweight title fight in a No Contest.
No staff were harmed in the making of this drama, so it was all a bit of relatively innocent fun that begged the question: when might we see “Rampage” back in the Bellator cage for real? We may have that answer thanks to a report from The Athletic’s Josh Gross:
It looks increasingly likely that Bellator will run a show Dec. 29 in Japan. Main event being discussed is Rampage Jackson vs. Fedor Emelianenko, and it would be billed as the Russian's final fight in Japan.— Josh Gross (@yay_yee) September 8, 2019
Bellator is in talks with Nobuyuki Sakakibara to collaborate on a pair of late December events in Japan, and Scott Coker told me he wants to bring Ryan Bader with him to challenge the Rizin light heavyweight champion, Jiri Porchazka. https://t.co/QLk5qM75Te— Josh Gross (@yay_yee) September 8, 2019
Just in case them tweets get deletes, here’s the deets: Scott Coker is working with RIZIN FC CEO Sakakibara on a New Years Eve celebration event in Japan. The main event being discussed now: Fedor Emelianenko vs. Quinton Jackson in a fight being dubbed as Fedor’s goodbye Japan match. Ryan Bader may also be there taking on 24-3 RIZIN 205 pound champ Jiri Porchazka.
Will new signee Cris Cyborg fight there? Josh Barnett? Sergei Kharitonov? Lyoto Machida? After Floyd Mayweather showed up to box Tenshin last year, who knows what is possible. Previous RIZIN New Years Eve events have taken place over multiple days with dozens of fights so there’s much more to come with that, and we’re sure it will all get sliced, diced, and broadcast in some form or another on DAZN and the Paramount Network.
What do you think, Maniacs? Who would you like to see on a Bellator / RIZIN New Years Eve fight card?