When the two were placed face-to-face, Quinton Jackson's shove of Muhammed Lawal at the weigh-ins for Bellator 120 on Friday may have hyped the crowd and been done for dramatic flair. However, the incident cost Jackson $10,000 and nearly cost him his chance to compete on the card.
According to Jon Lewis, head of the Mississippi Athletic Commission, who spoke to MMA Fighting on Monday, Jackson's push of Lawal is outside the boundaries of permissible pre-fight conduct between licensed combatants.
Lewis clarified Jackson was to simply be given a fine for the act, but when he informed Jackson after the weigh-ins he was to be charged for the act, Lewis said Jackson became extremely irate.
Lewis described Jackson as an "out of control individual to the nth degree."
In his alleged belligerence backstage at the Landers Center in Southaven, Miss., following the weigh-ins, Lewis said Jackson '"got very heated. More so on his side. I'm not going to let him push me over."
Lewis claims Jackson then used a number of expletives in close physical quarters to communicate his displeasure with the commission decision. "He got very irate and at this point was f-bombing me pretty bad," Lewis said.
Lewis said it was bad enough, by his estimation, that removing Jackson from the card altogether was explored as an option. Ultimately, Lewis declined to exercise that option after speaking with the promoter. In addition, Jackson later apologized at the venue. "Rampage was very apologetic," Lewis said. "He said he deserved the fine and he was assessed one for it."
While the commission considered fining Jackson a percentage of his purse for each alleged infraction, they instead levied a flat fine for common forms of physical misconduct.
Jackson eventually defeated Lawal on Saturday via unanimous decision, earning 29-28, 29-28 and 29-28 on all three judges' scorecards.