For Quinton “Rampage” Jackson, fighting Ryan Bader at UFC 144 is about a lot more than winning or losing.
It will be the first time in five years that Jackson will have fought in Japan, the place where he spent most of his formative years competing. The 33-year-old has a clear affinity for fighting in front of Japanese fans and for how the Japanese culture understands fighting in general. As a result, he’s motivated not by securing a certain outcome in the fight, but by making it exciting however it goes.
“I can give a rat’s ass if I defeat Ryan Bader or not, I just wanna put on the best show the world has ever seen,” said Jackson.
And when you see Jackson step into the cage inside the Saitama Super Arena later this month, you’ll be seeing an unapologetic brawler from the streets looking to put down a beating, not a man concerned with gameplans and strategy.
“I never claimed to be a martial artist or a guy that’s good at everything. I’m a street fighter,” he said. “There’s a lot of things I don’t care about. I don’t care to know what my opponent’s doing. I don’t care to know his skills and stuff like that, because I’m a brawler. A street fight, you just walk up to the guy, you start a fight; you got no tape on this guy.”
UFC 144: Edgar vs. Henderson goes down on February 26 from the Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan — the former site of the Pride Fighting Championships where Jackson made his name.