Quinton ‘Rampage’ Jackson Was Initially Apprehensive of His Son, Raja Jackson, Following in his Footsteps

'Rampage' appeared alongside his son and amateur MMA fighter Raja Jackson on a new episode of Brendan Schaubs Food Truck Diaries

Courtesy of @UnitedMMALeague on Twitter

MMA legend Quinton ‘Rampage’ Jackson was admittedly apprehensive when his son decided to follow in his footsteps.

Jackson is nothing short of combat sports royalty, competing in multiple major mixed martial arts organizations including PRIDE, the UFC, and Bellator. During his run, ‘Rampage’ competed with a who’s who of MMA talent, including Jon Jones, Chuck Liddell, Wanderlei Silva, ‘Shogun’ Rua, and Fedor Emelianenko. Today, Jackson is focused on guiding the career of his 23-year-old son Raja Jackson, but the former UFC light heavyweight champion wasn’t exactly thrilled about his son’s career choice at first.

Over time, ‘Rampage’ became more open to the idea, and while he has offered up the occasional pearl of wisdom, he ultimately opted to take a backseat to his son’s development as a mixed martial artist.

“If I’m gonna be honest, I didn’t know how I felt about him fighting,” Jackson told Brendan Schaub on an episode of Food Truck Diaries alongside his son and UFL found Harrison Rogers. “He started wrestling and when he started wrestling, I was really proud of him because he started late, just like me. He was 17 and okay, he’s gonna do something positive then if you want to start fighting. And he started hanging out with Antonio McKee. Then I was like, okay, he already chose the best coach.

“So I was like, yeah, go ahead. I’m just gonna step back and let him coach you and I’ll just tell you some of the things that worked for me. I think that where fathers mess up a lot of time, they don’t make it fun for them and nowadays they’re too much in their faces.”

Raja Jackson Admits that Having ‘Rampage’ as His Father Brings Added Pressure

Raja Jackson has so far scored four-straight wins as an amateur dating back to 2021. With his most recent victory coming via a first-round knockout, ‘da Clone’ feels it’s time to finally turn pro, but understands his father’s apprehension to sign off on the decision. 

“I understand where he’s coming from though,” Raja Jackson said while speaking to Schaub. “Especially after that fight,” Raja Jackson said of his father’s hesitation to let him turn pro. “I do still have a lot of stuff that I still need to work on and going from three minutes to five minutes is a big jump even though it doesn’t seem like it. I do agree with it, but at the same time, I’m getting older too and it’s starting to become harder. Especially in the gym. Everything is starting to move at a different pace now.”

As for having a UFC legend for a father, Raja Jackson admitted that it sometimes feels a little overwhelming, but he does his best to tune it out and not let it affect his work in the gym or in the cage. 

“It gets to me sometimes, but I do my best to not let that bother me,” he added.

Raja Jackson’s interest in fighting started at an early age after seeing his father put in work at the gym. The desire to train hard matched with the explosion of MMA’s popularity is what ultimately led him to follow in those same footsteps. 

“I always enjoyed… I used to go to the gym with him sometimes. I always used to enjoy that. I’d see how hard he worked. I’m a big fan of hard work. I like working out anyway. I’ve been watching him train since I was seven years old, or even younger. That’s when I started seeing, okay this… And I knew it was going to start getting big because you saw it on TV. Even back then, iCarly was big. It was getting traction. Here Comes the Boom, and all that stuff.”

UFL Founder Harrison Rogers Takes a Dig at Jake Paul and Gimmick Fights in MMA

United Fight League founder Harrison Rogers joined ‘Rampage’ and Raja Jackson on Food Truck Diaries to share the next step for his still-developing promotion. the UFL has hosted two events thus far with a third scheduled to go down on August 12. Revealing during their conversation that Quinton ‘Rampage’ Jackson and his son will one day compete on the same card, also announced that the promotion will be headed into enemy territory as it attempts to carve out a piece of the combat sports pie for itself. 

“Get ready because F3 and the UFL is going into enemy territory… Vegas. But you’ve got to. And people are going to hear that and go, ‘Oh my god, you’re already trying to fight UFC.’ That’s not at all. I’m excited for the UFL to be a completely independent… UFC will always be UFC, but the UFL is gonna be that league.

“We’ve talked about phase two. It’s a totally different model. We now have franchises. We have teams, but they take care of their fighters. It’s like the NBA where they don’t even need a union because they have these fighters that own a piece of the company. They make good money, but they also have health insurance. They actually have people who are advocating. None of these Jake Paul soundbites. 

“I’m not trying to pick fights or call anybody out, I just love that we’re actually doing what we say we’re going to do.”

Rogers admits that it’s an uphill battle with other promotions constantly cashing in on gimmick fights, referencing Dana White’s desperate push to book Mark Zuckerberg vs. Elon Musk inside the Octagon, whereas the UFL is a promotion that hopes to avoid the circus side of things, even if it means sacrificing a big payday. 

“It’s expensive as hell, but it’s the long haul. You have to be able to survive the five to 10 years to get an audience. Get people knowing that you’re not going to fizzle out and that’s what we’re doing. We’re going to do it right and smart, but these gimmicky things, maybe we should try to jump on that bandwagon and try to get a huge payday. Elon. Mark. All the Paul stuff. How much money do you think these fights can actually make, and do we sell out and do a gimmick every once in a while.”

Published on July 13, 2023 at 2:04 pm
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