Former UFC light heavyweight champ Quinton “Rampage” Jackson has been very open about his desire to fight on February 26 when the UFC returns to Japan and equally clear about wanting to face Mauricio Rua on the card in hopes of avenging a 2005 PRIDE loss to the Brazilian.
However, with Rua currently scheduled to throw down with Dan Henderson in mid-November for a shot at the winner of the title-fight between Jon Jones and Rashad Evans, it’s very possible “Shogun” may not be healthy enough or even available to fight again a few months later.
That possibility has already occurred to Jackson who apparently already has an alternate in mind.
“It don’t matter, give me anybody else… you know what, give me Forrest (Griffin),”said the 33-year old brawler in a conversation with Fightline. “I’ll fight Forrest in Japan, me and Forrest just lost, put two losers in there together. ”
Griffin defeated “Rampage” at UFC 86 in 2008 to become the UFC’s 205-pound champion after damaging him early with a series of leg kicks and holding on for the remaining rounds to earn a mildly controversial decision victory.
If Jackson is indeed booked for UFC Japan it will mark the 32-9 fighter’s return to the country he first came to prominence in as a member of the PRIDE roster for five years. During his run in the Land of the Rising Sun “Rampage” racked up wins in a number of memorable match-ups including his initial defeat of Chuck Liddell and infamous Powerbomb finish of Ricardo Arona.
PHOTO CREDIT – UFC
MMATraining Take: Griffin vs. Jackson makes perfect sense in that neither is in title-contention at the moment and their original offering left a bad taste in a lot of fans’ mouths. Putting it on the UFC’s upcoming Japanese card would simply be icing on an already delicious cake.