“I’m not interested in fighting Tito anymore,” “Rampage” told MMAjunkie.com. “No interest. There’s a couple reasons why, but I’m not interested. I’m over it.”
Jackson (32-11 MMA, 0-0 BMMA) and Ortiz (16-11-1 MMA, 0-0 BMMA) were scheduled to face each other at Bellator MMA’s inaugural pay-per-view event, Bellator 106, on Nov. 2, but when Ortiz suffered a neck injury just days before, the contest was scrapped.
It’s believed Ortiz’s fractured neck will keep him sidelined until at least 2014, which means the organization was forced to move Jackson to another card against a new opponent.
“I was pretty upset,” Jackson said of Ortiz’s withdrawal from the fight. “You train for somebody, and you look forward to fighting them.”
With Ortiz’s rampant injury woes, Jackson said he has no desire to risk signing for a fight that probably wouldn’t happen. Or even worse, if it did happen, he doesn’t want to be the one to cause any permanent damage.
When the match originally was signed, officials played up the fact that Jackson and Ortiz were former training partners. Both fighters said they had days where one would get the better of the other in the training room, and Jackson’s motivation was to determine the better man once and for all.
“The only reason I was even interested in fighting Tito was because Tito and I used to be training partners and I always wanted to know if I would beat him or not,” Jackson said. “That’s what I was getting out of fighting Tito, not because he’s a big name.”
With the Ortiz matchup apparently off the table for good, Jackson has turned his focus to other competitors in Bellator’s light heavyweight division.
While the likes of Attila Vegh, Emanuel Newton and “King” Mo Lawal seem like the most logical opponents for Jackson’s future, there is one big-name fighter who just entered free agency who could potentially serve as a future foe: Dan Henderson.
Henderson could re-sign with the UFC following his knockout loss to Vitor Belfort this past weekend, but he’s now lost three straight, and the 43-year-old is nowhere near a title shot. Still, he’s a fighter with name value who could be a beneficial signing for Bellator.
Unfortunately, after already defeating “Hendo” under the UFC banner in 2007, Jackson said he couldn’t have less interest in a rematch with the former PRIDE and Strikeforce champion.
“Why would I be interested in having a rematch with Dan Henderson?” Jackson said. “I already beat him; I beat him for the unified titles. I beat him for the PRIDE title. He has no titles now. He sucks.”
In the meantime, Jackson has another opponent lined up: Joey Beltran (14-9 MMA, 1-0 BMMA). They meet Friday at Bellator 108. The event takes place at Revel Atlantic City in New Jersey, and the main card airs on Spike TV following Spike.com prelims.
Beltran’s name doesn’t carry the same weight as Ortiz’s, but at the end of the day, Jackson isn’t focused on his opponent; he’s focused on delivering a memorable performance for fans.
“I like to entertain people,” Jackson said. “That’s what I do, and I think that me destroying Beltran will be an entertaining fight.”view original article >>
UNCASSVILLE, Conn. — Bellator up-and-comer A.J. McKee is grateful for the lessons from his dad about how to thrive in and out of the cage.Filed under: Bellator, News read news >>
The Bellator roster continues to bloom with the signing of former UFC title challenger Valerie Letourneau.Filed under: Bellator, News, UFC read news >>
Ilima Macfarlane is determined to be part of the inaugural Bellator women's flyweight championship fight. She doesn't know when the belt will be introduced or who her opponent would be, but said she' read news >>
Valerie Letourneau has become the latest UFC veteran to ink a deal with Bellator MMA. read news >>
A fourth championship fight will unfold when Bellator makes its debut in New York City on June 24 as Phil Davis will defend his light heavyweight championship against Ryan Bader.Filed under: Bellator read news >>
Following an injury to Muhammed "King Mo" Lawal, light heavyweight champion Phil Davis will step in and put his belt on the line at Bellator 180. read news >>
0-0. In certain contexts, it's a pretty auspicious pro MMA record. One of those contexts occurs when you see the 0-0 on a pay-per-view card. There aren't many modern fighters this side of CM Punk who read news >>
Bellator MMA today confirmed the main card for its second pay-per-view event while confirming additional bouts for its Spike-televised lead-in, Bellator 180. Filed under: Bellator, News read news >>
The biggest night in Bellator history continues to grow, as the fight promotion on Tuesday firmed up addition bouts for Bellator NYC and Bellator 180. read news >>
Bellator MMA is returning to Oklahoma with a main event pitting Patricky “Pitbull” Freire against Derek Campos. read news >>