It has been quite the roller coaster ride for former UFC light heavyweight champion Quinton “Rampage” Jackson. After controversially losing his title to Forrest Griffin at UFC 86, he then led Costa Mesa police on a high-speed hit-and-run chase, however managed to get his career back on track by knocking out his long-time foe Wanderlei Silva at UFC 92. Now, Rampage is focused on just one thing.
“Give me my belt back,” is Jackson’s message to current 205-pound champion Rashad Evans.”We all fight for the belt.”
Although regaining his crown marks his ultimate goal, he still has a bone to pick with the man that “beat” him in a razor-sharp split decision. In an ideal world, he would once again be defending his title against the man that sent his life spiraling downward.
“If I get the belt back then maybe Forrest can get a ‘W’ and then me and Forrest could fight for the belt again,” Rampage stated. “I’d rather take him out in a five-round fight. Say if I beat him in a 3Round fight then all these little Internet haters could say, ‘Forrest beat him in a 5Round fight, he only won in a 3Round fight.’ But it don’t matter because it’s going to be a short night for Forrest any time.”
To whom much is given, much can be taken away. Nobody knows that more than the controversial Jackson. Although he has had his fair share of troubles, he feels that he will not only become a better fighter because of it, but a better man as well.
“I learned this world is a crazy place,” Jackson said. “We all have to live together. We have to get more mature. 2008 wasn’t all that great, but 2007 was like heaven. 2009 will be all fine because I’m going to be the man again. I’m going to get my belt back. I won’t stop for a long time. Get used to me. The UFC is my home and it changed my life and helped me bring my family together. I’m going to keep on trucking no matter what happens. I’m going to be the same man. I got my truck out of the shop. 2010 I’m going to do it again.”
His next challenge will be against former “The Ultimate Fighter 1” contestant Keith Jardine at UFC 96 on March 7th. The opponent is ever dangerous, however Rampage is more determined than he has ever been to take back what he believes is rightfully his.
“The most focused I’d ever been in my life,” Jackson stated. “Give me my belt back.”