UFC News: Rampage Jackson out of UFC 186, Bellator's hand raised in court victory
By Josh Nason, WrestlingObserver.com
In a decision that shouldn’t surprise anyone, Bellator MMA won a preliminary injunction in New Jersey’s Burlington County Superior Court, preventing Quinton “Rampage” Jackson from competing on April 25th’s UFC 186 in Montreal.
If you’ve followed the case so far, Jackson left Bellator and claimed that the company had breached their contract with him, a contract signed by previous CEO Bjorn Rebney. By not giving him Bellator 120 buyrates and failing to follow through on other promotional considerations, Jackson clams he had the right to terminate their agreement.
Jackson surprisingly appeared on a UFC show in December and announced he was returning after nearly two years away. As recently as Saturday, he did a live interview promoting his fight with Fabio Maldonado. Bellator CEO Scott Coker immediately tweeted following Jackson’s first appearance that he was under an exclusive contract and they would “protect our contractual rights”. In a statement to MMA Fighting, a Bellator spokesman said they look forward to Rampage fighting in Bellator again.
What next? More court battles. I don’t expect Jackson to want to return to Bellator, nor Bellator to simply release him as a sign of goodwill. If UFC really wanted Jackson, they could always attempt a buyout of some sort, but that would set a precedent they might not want to set.
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On the business side of things, the loss of Jackson weakens an already bland main PPV card, headlined by flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson vs. Kyoji Horiguchi. Michael Bisping vs. C.B. Dollaway moves up to the co-main event.