“I have to get my weight down,” Quinton “Rampage” Jackson wrote to fans last night, finally addressing the elephant in the ring after a sluggish, uninspired loss to legend Fedor Emelianenko. Fedor knocked out Rampage in the first round of their headlining Bellator matchup at Saitama Super Arena. Fedor had mentioned ending his long fight career prior to the Bellator 237 card, bringing it up again in the cage after adding the Jackson KO to his lengthy resume:
“Unfortunately and regretfully I want to say perhaps my career stops here, on a win in Japan where my career started. I’m finishing my career here,” Fedor told the crowd through an interpreter in his post-fight interview. He later went on to clarify to MMA Junkie that he meant his last fight IN Japan, not last fight ever, and wants to hit the cage again in 2020 as part of his “farewell” tour. Fedor’s current record is 39-6.
The knockout seemed to jolt Jackson into addressing a decline fight fans have been watching for the better part of the last two years.
“I felt like a hippopotamus out there,” he said in a now-deleted Instagram post. “But that’s my fault. No excuses. It’s all right. I’ll be back. But I ain’t coming back at heavyweight.”
Rampage, now 41, was at his best during his light heavyweight years, 205lbs. of muscle and bullish character which thrilled UFC viewers. He tipped the Bellator weigh-in scales this weekend a full 60lbs. heavier than that, after a full training camp at the esteemed Treigning Lab. And while he may have made the heavyweight limit for the match, Jackson was no where near his usual fighting shape, looking breathless and timid in the few minutes before his KO…so much so that some viewers accused him of taking a fall in the match. Which Jackson says he did not:
Jackson departed the UFC in 2013 after a streak of losses to Jon Jones, Ryan Bader, and Glover Teixeira respectively. He collected five straight wins after his move to Bellator, but has struggled since 2017 when his weight began to creep upwards. His last victory was in September 2018, against a post-prime Wanderlei Silva.
His record stands at 38-14.