Quinton “Rampage” Jackson (32-11) is taking full advantage of the freedom his new Bellator contract provides him to seek opportunities outside MMA. He’s already been featured in TNA Wrestling, and there are reports that he’s planning to star in his own reality show. Now, there is word that he will even try his hand at boxing.
The details are sketchy, but the opponent is one MMA fans are already familiar with.
Former World Champion Roy Jones, Jr. (56-8, 40 KOs) will box Jackson under his new Bellator deal, and the fight is set to be part of a Pay-Per-View event. Jones was working on setting up a fight with former UFC Middleweight Champion Anderson Silva, but Silva’s loss to Chris Weidman made that bout all but impossible to put together.
The mere idea of such a fight, considering the UFC’s strict rules on cross competition being forbidden, was far fetched, anyway. Though Jones attended Silva’s loss to Weidman on Dana White‘s invite, the deal never seemed anywhere close to becoming a reality. The timing being an issue for Jones also complicated things. Jones made it known he wanted any such fight to happen soon, always conscious of Father Time catching up with him.
Jones hasn’t had a fight since June 30, 2012, but he did win his last two boxing matches.
Jackson is riding a three-fight losing streak in MMA. He lost his last bout in the UFC to Glover Teixeira back in January. He is dealing with a nagging knee injury, but should be at full strength by the time this end-of-the-year fight happens.
The bout is reportedly being set up to be a direct competitor to the UFC’s 2013 closeout card, which will be headlined by the Weidman/Silva rematch. UFC 168 is scheduled for Dec. 28 and will also feature the TUF 18 grudge match between Miesha Tate and Ronda Rousey.
Whenever the Jones/Jackson fight happens, it’s most likely going to be Jackson’s first and last boxing match. Jones may be around 10 years older than Jackson and a little slower than he used to be, but he’s a master at his craft. Jackson’s far from his MMA glory days. Though his boxing may be one of the best aspects of his overall MMA skills, it would be mediocre at best in the context of a fight with Jones.
This fight would have made a little more sense if it were Jones vs. Silva, but even then Jones would have the advantage. Putting Jackson across the ring from Jones only makes this more of a sideshow. If Jones is looking for one more solid knockout to end his career on, Jackson is the perfect candidate to give it to him.