Quinton Jackson is really committing to his heavyweight fight with Fedor Emelianenko.
Two legends of PRIDE will go to war on Saturday at Bellator & Rizin: Japan (also known as Bellator 237: Fedor vs. Rampage). The fight will be contested at heavyweight and Jackson has really committed to the move, according to strength and conditioning coach Sam Calavitta.
“I have to tip my hat to him because he stepped into the gauntlet with the toughest and the most brazen guys he could step in with in the garage where there’s nothing but sweat and soul-searching,” Calavitta told MMA Junkie. “Early on, he probably questioned why he was there. But I think he knew deep down that we were very sincere to help him. He came to us and said, ‘I would like to get back to my former self.’ He wants to end his career on the note he started it and he felt as though we were the people who could do it.”
“My idea for someone in a weight class is to bring them in as big and strong as they can,” he explained. “We’re going to bring him basically around 260. He’s a big man. He’s come such a tremendously long way. I don’t want to weight to be an issue. You can’t hurry the weight and if you try to do that all you end up with is a bunch of saggy muscle. We’ve been gradually bringing it down then bringing it up in muscle. It’s just about teaching the body. He’s done an incredible job. He’s going to come out big, strong and very good shape.”
Jackson’s move up to heavyweight will be a short-term detour, Calavitta assured. “Rampage” is apparently intent on finishing his MMA career at his longtime home of light-heavyweight.
“His ultimate goal is for me to take him back down where he started at 205,” Calavitta told the publication. “It’s going to be a process. I think to do it correctly it would take about a year. But we’re definitely heading in the right direction and he’s all on board. He has worked his ass off for us and give us everything he has.
Bellator’s last show of 2019 also features known commodities Michael Chandler, Michael Page, Lorenz Larkin and Daron Cruickshank.