Quinton “Rampage” Jackson, after earning a split decision victory over Lyoto Machida at UFC 123, declared that he felt he owed Machida a rematch.
“That fight was so close, it was unfair for Machida,” he told UFC broadcaster Joe Rogan after the fight. “Even though I don’t want to, I have to give him a rematch.”
Machida fell short of demanding a rematch, but said he was ready to fight Jackson again.
“That’s gonna be up to the UFC, but I’d like an immediate rematch also,” said the Brazilian. “We’ll just have to see what the UFC has to say.”
The UFC has since spoken, or at least the head of the UFC has.
“No. No. As far as I’m concerned, and apparently, as far as the judges are concerned, Rampage won that fight,” said UFC president Dana White at the UFC 123 post-fight press conference.
“I don’t play favorites. I call ’em like I see ’em. (Rampage) won two rounds. It’s a three-round fight. You won two of them, he won one of them. You’re the winner,” he said, squashing any speculation about an immediate rematch.
So what’s next for Jackson? White wasn’t as definitive about that, as he was adamant that Machida would not be next.
“He’s in the mix (for a title shot),” said the UFC president. “Those two guys fighting tonight, they’re at the top of the heap of the 205-pound division and Rampage came out the winner tonight.”
Asked what he thought was next, Jackson was less committal than White.
“This ain’t my show. I don’t own the UFC homey. I just fight here.”