There’s a very interesting article on the Sherdog.com homepage talking about a past interview Quinton “Rampage” Jackson did with MMA Today in which he claims that Pride offered him a $2,000 bonus if he lost to Kazushi Sakuraba in their match in 2001 by knockout or submission.
Here’s the quote that I think will grow to become quite infamous:
“I’m never the type of fighter that would lose for money,” Jackson said. “I don’t do that. But they told me, ‘If you win this fight, you get $10,000.’ But they told me — these are like the two people from PRIDE who got fired recently, I don’t know if the president of PRIDE knew about it — but they told me themselves: ‘If you lose by knockout or submission and you don’t tap, you get $12,000.’
“I said, ‘But what if I knock him out?’ and they said ‘You get $10,000.’ Then I understood what was going on. This was my first time fighting in the big show in Japan and I learned sometimes they wanted the other guy to win.”
Jackson took the match on short notice and ended up losing to Sakuraba after getting caught in the joke.
But the comments really call the integrity of many of the bouts fought in Pride into question. If it’s true that Jackson was offered extra money to lose, is it safe to assume that the offer was made to other fighters?
For the full article, check out: