Bellator 108: “Rampage” Jackson to Fight Fellow UFC Vet Joey Beltran
By FCF Staff
Since “Rampage” Jackson will no longer fight Tito Ortiz this Saturday due to the latter incurring a neck injury, Bellator has announced that Jackson will fight UFC veteran Joey Beltran on November 15th. The light-heavyweight bout will headline Bellator 108, which will take place at the Revel in Atlantic City.
Jackson (32-11) will be making his Bellator debut after signing with the promotion earlier this year. The former UFC light-heavyweight champ hasn’t fought since January when he lost by unanimous decision to Glover Teixeira at UFC on FOX 6. The 35 year-old vet is 2-3 in his last five bouts.
“I want to thank Joey Beltran for stepping up for the fight so I can get my first Bellator victory out of the way,” Jackson said in a press release from the promotion. “He’ll have the unfortunate honor of taking the ass whooping I was going to give Tito. My body is in incredible shape right now. I feel like I did in PRIDE, and Joey Beltran is the right guy to put on an exciting fight and showcase what I’ve been working on.”
Beltran (14-9) fought earlier this month and dropped a split decision to Fabio Maldonado at UFC Fight Night 29. The 31 year-old fighter, who went 3-6 with 1 no contest in the UFC, was released by the promotion following the defeat.
“This last month has been an absolute roller coaster of emotion,” Beltran said. “I’ve always been a warrior and thank god for my family and my teammates at Alliance MMA for keeping me focused and dedicated. I’ve always known that good things will happen to me if you put in the hard work and keep grinding, and that’s exactly what has happened with this opportunity. I fought for Bellator in 2009 when they were just starting out on ESPN, and I was fairly new on the scene as well. I loved my time there, and I couldn’t be happier to be back.”
“Getting the chance to fight Rampage is just a tremendous opportunity. This is my Rocky Balboa moment. A win against one of the best and well known fighters in the world would be an incredible accomplishment, and I’m not taking it lightly. Rampage better be prepared and ready for this fight. I’m prepared to go through hell during this fight. There will be blood. Someone is going to get hurt. This is my home now, and I don’t want to go anywhere. It’s Rampage first, then a Bellator Light Heavyweight Tournament, and then onto the title.”
Beltran has fought for Bellator before, as in 2009 he stopped Sherman Pendergarst at the promotion’s fifth show.
The main card for Bellator 108 will be broadcast live on SPIKE. Middleweight champion Alexander Shlemenko is also scheduled to fight Doug Marshall at the event.