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Keith Jardine: No way I would fight Rashad Evans

Win or lose against former champ Quinton "Rampage" Jackson on Saturday at UFC 96, Keith Jardine will not be challenging Rashad Evans for the light-heavyweight title.

"Me and Rashad we've always talked about that and he's here helping me train right now," Jardine (14-4-1) said. "And there's no way that we're going to fight afterwards."

On the other hand, if Jackson (29-7) wins, he'll earn a title shot against Evans. Jardine has no problem waiting on the sidelines, placing friendship before business.

"People ask me all of the time and that's why people love this sport is because we're not businessmen," Jardine said. "We're not like NFL players, they're trying to stay healthy and get a paycheck. We fight with all of our heart and our soul. And how are you going to go out there and give the audience what they deserve when you're fighting one of your best friends. That is just not going to happen."

On the bright side, a win for Jardine against Jackson would certainly elevate his career and bring up his number of victories against former UFC champions to three.

"It's not frustrating at all," said Jardine, who holds wins over Chuck Liddell and Forrest Griffin. "I get to beat somebody else that used to have a title so that's great for me."

Lyoto Machida will receive a title shot against Evans if Jardine wins.

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