Award-winning MMA journalist Ariel Helwani spent Thursday night walking the streets of Tokyo with Quinton “Rampage” Jackson, who is competing in Saturday’s* UFC 144 co-main event against Ryan “Darth” Bader.
It will be Jackson’s first time fighting in Japan since Feb. 26, 2006, exactly six years to the day when he fought and won a unanimous decision over Dong Sik-Yoon at Pride 31 at Saitama Super Arena, the exact same location in fact where he will be fighting Bader on Saturday. The whole situation for Jackson has an aura of destiny surrounding it.
As Jackson strolled the Tokyo streets he reminisced about his days fighting in Pride and his appreciation for the Japanese fans and their attitude toward MMA. Jackson and Helwani took a few moments to stop in at one of the local arcades for a quick game of Tekken 2 which happens to be one of the fighter’s favorite games.
Jackson discussed some of the more significant and personal moments in his career, the highs and lows, including what led to the incident that occurred after he lost the UFC light heavyweight title to Forrest Griffin and how being betrayed by a Christian friend help lead to a spiritual awakening where he realized he could be spiritual without being religious.
All this and much more in this 45-minute documentary with Quinton “Rampage” Jackson as he returns to the country where he first became a star in Pride and ultimately a living legend in the world of mixed martial arts.
* – UFC 144 actually takes place Sunday morning, Feb. 26, in Japan. However, for those watching the event on Pay-Per-View in the U.S. the LIVE broadcast starts at the normal time of 10 p.m. ET (7 p.m. PT) on Saturday, Feb. 25.