Quinton ‘Rampage’ Jackson allowed Fighters Only to pay him a visit at him recently as he prepares for his UFC 144 fight with Ryan Bader in Japan.
His past training camps have taken place at the MusclePharm facility in Denver, Colorado but Jackson chose to stay at home in California for this one. He explained why to our man Gary Alexander - and then went in to a protracted diatribe against UFC commentator Joe Rogan.
Jackson is fed up of Rogan describing him as ‘one-dimensional’ and he held nothing back as he let rip against the UFC fixture. The fight with Ryan Bader takes place in Tokyo, Japan on February 25th.
FO: You are returning to Japan which in many ways is your spiritual home. Have you given any thought to what will happen when you get there?
I haven’t imagined what is going to happen with the fans and all that, I am sure they still remember me. I just remember that it was always positive energy off the crowd in Japan and I just hope that I can vibe off that energy and put on a great show for the fans. And then after the fight I watch it [back] and be happy, like ‘oh yeah I did this I did that’. But beforehand, I wont even think about it.
FO: Are you going to hang around in Japan for a while afterwards?
Yeah I am going to hang out in Japan for a little while after the fight because I got a lot of fans out there and I always like to visit them and
FO: You’ve stayed at home in California for this camp; how come?
People who know me, its no secret that I don’t like the cold. I was going to go to MusclePharm to train but then my manager Anthony was like, do you know how cold its going to be in Denver and I was like oh yeah I didn’t think about that it will be winter time! So I was like man I can’t do that, I just cant perform in the cold.
That’s why I haven’t been training at the Wolfslair gym over in the UK recently - I can go there in the summer when it warms up. I had to train here at my gym - MMA Elite helped me get a gym here [near my home, the Rampage Training Center].
Its an up and coming gym so its not that packed yet, we are still getting more members, so that means I can hold a camp there noboy is in my way, its 15 mintues from my house and I can sleep in my own house, be comfortable, play video games. I can see my kids, its working out pretty good.
FO: What do you know about Ryan Bader?
I don’t know a whole lot about Ryan Bader I just know that he is a tough guy, a tough wrestler and stuff. I hope he likes to stand and bang because everybody knows that I like to stand and bang. But if he wants to wrestle that’s ok too.
In my last fight I got submitted and so I have been doing a lot of jiu jitsu. Its not because I’m not going to be stressing if he takes me down - I’ve got no ego as a wrestler, if he takes me down I am not going to be stressing because I was never a really good wrestler in high school, I started late. Its because my jiu jitsu is really rough because I really don’t like it that much, for me its kind of boring to drill jiu jitsu over and over. And I feel like my fans don’t pay money to see me submit people. That’s my mindset.
But for this fight I don’t care. I am not going to be panicking if he tries to take it to the ground because I don’t feel like his strong point is the ground either. I don’t care where this fight goes.
FO: In a perfect world how does this fight go?
In a perfect world I step into that cage … and then I yawn like I just did on you and he smells my breath and faints. Then I get my cheque and get out of there like yeahhh. And I don’t gotta do an interview with Joe Rogan, fake-ass, I am just gone, out of there.
That’s in a perfect world because after you fight, if you win then Joe Rogan gotta do an interview with you. And most likely he has been talking some crap about you and how you don’t throw leg kicks. ‘I don’t know why he don’t throw leg kicks!’ - because Joe, I am fighting a wrestler who wants to take me down really bad, that’s why I aint throwing leg kicks.
‘He’s so one-dimensional, he’s so one-dimensional’ - he’s going on about jiu jitsu the whole time. That’s why [when its time to talk to him] I’m like oh here comes Joe Rogan and he’s all fake in his face like he’s not just picked apart your whole game like he’s the best fighter in the world and he knows every decision you’re gonna make while he is just sitting there watching you.
FO: What are you hoping for from this fight?
I want to give the fans a really exciting fight, win or lose. Two losses in a row would be really bad for me. I hope I win but most of all I hope I put a really good fight on for the fans.
FO: How do you think a fight with you and Rogan would go?
I think would beat the sh-t out of Joe Rogan - as long as he don’t get me to the ground, because his jiu jitsu is really good. I know he’s got good jiu jitsu guy because he’s so biased towards jiu jitsu guys. Every time a guy is a jiu jitsu fighter Rogan might as well be playing the rusty trombone like, ‘oh a jiu jitsu guy’ [mimes bl0wj0b action].
I don’t give a fu-k man, I am sick of people putting their [opinions]… if everyone was a jiu jitsu fighter it would be a boring-ass sport. Everyone is not the same. Some people like to stand and bang some people like jiu jitsu. I don’t knock people who like jiu jitsu. Sometimes its boring when they are wrestling but sometimes its boring when people are standing too.
FO: This seems to be something that has really riled you…
I just think [if you’re a commentator] you should be neutral. Im gonna tell you guys a story - go back and watch Pride. Ba Rutten and Steven Quadros commentated - those guys are my good friends but you couldn’t tell if you listended to the commentary. We hung out, outside of work, but you could never tell by listening to them when I fought. If I got hit with a good shot or I was getting my butt kicked they would call it. They were not biased towards skills or anything like that.
That’s the way it should be. Walk a mile in my shoes - I am the fighter, I go through a training camp with injuries and I know I cant do this manoeuvre but I am not going to tell everyone that - ‘I’m hurt so I’m not gonna do that.’ Then I have some commentator saying do this do that, I just want to look out the cage and say ‘shut the fu-k up’.
FO: Can you hear what the commentators are saying when you are in the cage?
Sometimes, because Joe Rogan has one of those girly high-ass voices that you can hear. I just want to tell him to shut the fu-k up sometimes. Like, lets see you do it. Lets see you come in here and kick this mother-er who wants to take you down. Shut the fu-k up.
People can call me one-dimensional all they want. I don’t care -at the end of the day its my fight. It ain’t there fight its my fight. I trained for this fight. People forget, I did Muay Thai fights, K-1, jiu jitsu tournaments and I wrestled. One dimensional? Okay. Kiss my ass. I like to put an exciting fight.
So what if am not trying to take people down, ground and pound them, trying to kick people - you don’t know what injuries I have got or what. I am trying to make a living so once you know what’s going on, shut the fu-k up.
FO: Aside from your issue with commentators, how is life and your mindset in general?
I’m happy with everything. I am very content. I am just doing me, living my life with my family. I am a realist I know I wont be fighting forever, a lot of fans don’t understand that, they get upset when guys retire, I think that’s selfishness on the side of those fans. I know that I cant fight forever, I am getting all these injuries and stuff and sometimes I don’t feel like training. I know that I need to do something else and move on.
Fighting all these years, I would call it a lifestyle, and I know that me teaching in the gym for the rest of my life is not going to keep up the lifestyle that I like to live. So I want to do movies, I want to rap, I want to write movies. I want to produce reality shows - I got so many ideas. I like to just amuse people, make them laugh. I’m actually making video games right now for the iPad, apps and stuff… oh.. wait, I didn’t mean to tell you that!
FO: Can you tell us any plans or programmes you’ll be running at your new gym when you’re back?
Whenever I get six weeks where I got nothing going on, I am going to do Rampage’s boot camp at my gym. That’s a promise to myself, I am going to train as well, so you come and join the Rampage Boot Camp. It will be all army fatigues and it will be just like you signed up for the military. But I ain’t no military type of guy so its all gonna be different type of gear. But that’s the first thing you need to do, Rampage’s Boot Camp… you know, if I get a chance to get it started…