Rampage Jackson may be past his prime but he may be the best in the UFC at stirring up controversy. The former UFC champion is making news this week with claims that UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Bones Jones has a spy in Rampage’s camp.
Now by reading the abstract or the headline you are probably thinking to yourself that this is just Rampage well…being Rampage. Jackson is known for saying some off of the wall things so an accusation of paranoia isn’t something unexpected from the former champ. However, once you start reading the details of the story you may think much differently about Jackson’s claims.
As the story goes, Jackson is currently training for his UFC 135 bout against UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones. According to Jackson’s camp, someone sent Jackson a tweet telling him that he had a spy in his camp. Jackson took that tweet seriously and planted a story in his camp to see if it would get out. It did, and you are not going to believe the source.
The source of the information…Jon Jones manager Malki Kawa.
Kawa has denied this and went on record with Kevin Iole to dispute the information.
“I promise to God, I have no spy in that camp,” Kawa said. “It’s completely and totally untrue. There is nothing to it at all. It’s funny he said that, though, because we’ve heard he has had old training partners of Jon coming in to work with him. We don’t care and it’s kind of hilarious he’s doing this. But I can guarantee you there is nothing at all that is true about this other than that I called Joe Silva after someone put out a thing on Twitter that Rampage was injured and pulling out. I wanted to know what was up, but it was no more than that. That is it.”
That all sounds well and good but the sleuths at BloodyElbow.com followed up on Kawa’s claim. According to the report on their website, Kawa follows only 64 people on Twitter. Four are BloodyElbow.com staff members and none recall seeing any reports about a Jackson injury.
Jackson also accused Rashad Evans of having inside information on his camp as well after their fight. Jackson said he had a real bad knee injury going into the fight that he kept secret. Jackson said he found it odd that Evans repeatedly punched him in the knee. Jackson didn’t come out and say that Evans had a spy but he told reporters that he found the whole attack odd.
How could a spy impact the fight? I think in MMA it could impact a fight almost more than any other sport. There are so many variables in MMA that if Rampage has a particular game plan or found a specific weakness that Jones knows about than Jackson’s whole strategy could be neutralized. I remember Nick Diaz after a fight telling his opponent to watch his back because he had spies in his camp. Maybe this is more common than we think?
Or maybe Rampage is just having a good time playing mind games?
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