Detailed Report of the Quinton “Rampage” Jackson / Bellator / TNA Conference Call
Jun 5, 2013 - by Brian Jaso
Participants- Quinton “Rampage” Jackson, Kevin Kay-Spike TV President, Bjorn Rebney-Bellator CEO and Chairman, and Dixie Carter-TNA President
After all the formal introductions we get underway with Rampage right away. The first question was why Bellator? Rampage said that working for Dana White and UFC almost ruined him. It made him really hate MMA. It was not a good working environment. He said that working for Bellator is a sweet deal. They have really taken care of him. He said “It is no secret that I have lost 3 fights in a row”. He said after his injury he still fought because he didn’t want to let his fans down. Rampage said after he shot the movie the A-Team where he played BA Barackas his relationship with UFC really went south. He said the difference between Bellator and UFC is that UFC got mad when he did a movie, and Bellator will try to find him movies.
The next question was why Pro Wrestling? He said he always wanted to be a Pro Wrestler. That’s why he wrestled in high school. Some of his MMA style is based on Pro Wrestling. He then switched his topic to MMA again. He said he would like to fight as a Heavyweight. He is ready to beat some of the bigger guys up.
The topic was brought back to UFC again Rampage did not shy away from this conversation. He said the fans don’t know this but in UFC if you lose 2 fights in a row you have a chance to get cut from UFC.
This brought us to the topic of career longevity. He said he liked the idea of working with TNA and Bellator because he could work for them until he was much older. He referenced how old Sting and Hulk Hogan are and the are still competing. He brought up the topic of money and said that it’s all about the money. He said you should love what you do and he does, but you need to make money. He said anyone who tells you it’s not about the money is lying to you.
UFC was brought up again and he was asked what happened to end the relationship and he said he can’t talk about it in detail or he will be sued.
He was asked if he was training and how he was rehabing and he said he has been training in Mexico.
He was then asked about if he would be going to OVW, TNA’s training minor leagues in Louisville, KY, Dixie Carter Jumped in to answer. She said he would either be in OVW or in Southern California at another training facility. She then mentioned that she has 3 ways to get talent. WWE, a Free Agent like Rampage, or someone they have brought up through their system. She is so excited to bring Rampage into the TNA family.
Rampage then talked about how UFC only brought him in to fight Chuck Liddell. And the fans booed him after he knocked Chuck out. He said they egged his house. From then on he has always been known as non fan friendly. He said when he was in PRIDE he was very fan friendly, but UFC drained everything out of him. He compared it to when you first date your girlfriend and you make out and tongue kiss all the time. And then you eventually just give each other a little kiss. He said that he and Bellator and TNA were tongue kissing which brought a huge laugh from everyone.
He was asked about the Pressure of fighting in Bellator and wrestling in TNA. He said there is no pressure and that he realizes he will not win all his fights in Bellator. He is ok with that and will do the best he can.
Another wresting question asked was what were some of his memories of wrestling. He said he grew up in Memphis and went to the Mid South Coliseum to watch wrestling as a kid. His brother used to write the TV station in town for free tickets. He referenced watching Undertaker, Jerry Lawler, and Jeff Jarrett. He then brought up how big of a fan he is of Hulk Hogan. He said he was the Ultimate Warrior for Halloween 2 years in a row.
He finished the call up saying that what Bellator, TNA, and himself are about to do will shock the fans and make them say wow. They all said this is uncharted territory for both wrestling and MMA and that it is going to be a huge success.
The call ended after about an hour and 5 minutes.
Rampage will make his debut for TNA tomorrow night at 9 PM in their new time slot on SPIKE TV.