Just when you thought the line-up for UFC 186 couldn’t take another hit, well, it has.
Yes, according to multiple reports, Bellator has been granted a temporary injunction, which will prevent “Rampage” Jackson from making his Octagon return on April 25th. The former light-heavyweight champ and popular fighter was supposed to fight Fabio Maldonado on that date.
This is the latest development regarding Jackson’s contract status, as last year, the fighter made headlines when it was announced he was returning to the UFC. Most folks believed that Jackson was still under contract with Bellator, but the fighter and his reps argued that the promotion hadn’t honored all the terms of his deal. Not surprisingly, Bellator doesn’t see it that way, and took legal steps to prevent Jackson from fighting at UFC 186.
According to a report from MMA Fighting.com, the Burlington County Superior Court of New Jersey has granted the injunction, and now the legal battle will continue to determine whether a contract was breached. In the aforementioned report, the following statement from Bellator was included:
“We are pleased by the judge’s ruling and look forward to having Rampage fighting for Bellator again soon”
It’s kind of hard to imagine Jackson fighting for Bellator again at this stage, but if the court decides his contract’s still good, then…
Jackson’s future aside, this is another serious blow for UFC 186. Originally, the card was supposed to feature TJ Dillashaw-Renan Barao II and Rory MacDonald-Hector Lombard. The latter allegedly tested positive for steroids, however, and has been suspended for a year. Then, Dillashaw went down with an injury and his rematch with Barao was postponed.
The card is set to feature flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson taking on Kyoji Horiguchi, which could be really entertaining, but it’s probably not a fight that will draw big with mainstream fans. Other main card fights include CB Dollaway-Michael Bisping, Patrick Cote-Joe Riggs and Shane Campbell-John Makdessi.
UFC 186 will be hosted by the Bell Centre in Montreal, Quebec.