Quinton “Rampage” Jackson has enjoyed a storied career loaded with peaks. He’s also endured his share of down-times. Over the course of a 13-plus year career, the man has worked his way up from Gladiator Challenge bully to Pride standout, to UFC light heavyweight champion.
Yes, the man has suffered a few (apparent) mild breakdowns, but through it all, Rampage has always shown up to fight his heart out, and that’s something fans have come to admire deeply.
Rampage may be a fickle man, a bit on the sensitive side, but he’s got a legion of fans standing behind him, and I’m sure they want - as much as Jackson himself does - to see Quinton exit the sport as he should: in top form, fighting for the top promotion in the world.
The relationship between Jackson and UFC president, Dana White has been strained for some time now, but that might not guarantee a parting of ways.
Dana is a businessman who has a sound grasp on what and who sells, and Jackson is a fighter of extreme pride with marquee value to his name. Friendly or not, it seems absurd that Rampage and Dana will simply head in opposite directions after Saturday night.
Jackson’s days as an elite competitor are fading, but we still tune in to hear the patented howl, always hoping for a dramatic slam, or a vicious hook to find its mark. Dana knows this.
If Rampage Jackson deflates Glover Teixeira’s balloon this weekend, he’ll immediately be tossed back into “Top 5“ talks, and he’ll reposition himself as a major topic of praise amongst the MMA community. Any fan who’s lost his desire to see Rampage fight, will likely rediscover that infatuation.
When Rampage wins, it’s often in dramatic, jaw dropping fashion. Dramatic fights sell tickets and Pay-Per-Views, and both White and Rampage win when the books clock high figures.
A destructive performance from Rampage could completely sway the tides between Rampage and the UFC in general. A hefty locker room bonus could persuade Jackson to rethink his immediate plans, and if he can perform at his best this weekend, a beefy bonus certainly isn’t out of the question.
So, will Rampage really part ways with the UFC after UFC on FOX 6? Not if Jackson leaves his all in the cage and treats fans to a vintage performance. However, if Quinton falls to the oft-praised Teixeira, he may once more find himself battling his inner demons, and a third consecutive loss won’t endear his performance price-tag to Dana White.
Rampage’s future hinges on Saturday’s bout. With a win over Glover, I see Rampage and White shocking the world, with the former champion remaining an active member of the UFC roster. A loss seems to ensure walking papers.
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