By Anthony McClean, Editor In Chief Emeritus NEW HAVEN (BASN) —...
“Rampage” Freezes The “Iceman”
The long anticipated rematch between Quinton “Rampage” Jackson and Chuck “Iceman” Liddell for Liddell’s title had the Mixed Martial Arts world buzzing.
Liddell was on a personal mission to revenge every lost he suffered. Previous losses to Randy Couture and Jeremy Horn were revenged by knockouts and now it was Jackson’s turn to join the Redemption tour.
Jackson had other ideas. The Rampage had no intention of being yet another victim of the Redemption tour and he came into the match with the confidence that came with a previous victory.
This was a Liddell crowd as the crowd booed Jackson at the fighters’ introduction but Jackson face showed everything; he was ready to rumble.
The opening minutes saw both men moving and waiting for the others.
Jackson waved Liddell in and Liddell threw a left hook. Jackson blocked the left hook and immediately countered with a right hand that crashed upon Liddell’s face quicker than a blink of the eye.
Liddell dropped to the canvas and Jackson quickly jumped on the down Liddell.
Four unanswered blows by Jackson ended the fight as the referee called the bout.
In just 1:53 of the first round, Jackson placed his name in the annuals of Mixed Martial Arts as the new Light Heavyweight champion by beating a popular champ.
In less two minutes one legend ended and new one began.
That is what happens in the pugilistic world when one older fighter loses to a younger and hungrier opponent. The knockout is what fans remembered and the image of that right hand will defined Jackson for his career.
Fans will not remember the fact that the fight lasted only 1:53 or that there was very little action in those two minutes. They will remember that crashing right hand that sent the Iceman shivering on the canvas.
After the bout, Liddell said, “I made a mistake and got caught.”
Jackson commented, “I was real relaxed. Chuck was right. He said that someone was going to get knocked out in the first round. I didn’t expect Chuck to go down like that, it was destiny.”
Liddell came in the fight with seven straight knock outs and he was favored to revenge his lost to Jackson. Jackson’s victory now sets up new potential bouts.
Pride Middleweight and Light Heavyweight champion Dan Henderson congratulated Jackson on his victory and now there is talk of bout between these two. UFC President Dana White added, “Whoever wins will have both belts.”
This evening, it was Liddell that had the fans’ support but there are UFC officials who believe that they have a future superstar in Quinton Jackson who bring his own charisma into the Octagon.
White merely noted that while fans booed Jackson, it was more of a pro-Liddell feeling among the fans as oppose to being anti-Jackson.
And at the age of 28, Jackson still has long career ahead of him.
This bout followed the De La Hoya-Mayweather boxing match and while the action was sparse, the one dramatic knock out provided the big moment that fans yearn for.
The knockout artist is what sells seats whether it is boxing or the Mixed Martial Arts in today’s pugilistic world. What made Liddell a fan favorite was that he knocked people out.
With seven straight knock outs, he provided the excitement that fans craved for.
Quinton “Rampage” Jackson has similar potential and soon, he will be one walking into the Octagon with cheering crowds.