Chael Sonnen and Quinton “Rampage” Jackson are kicking off the Bellator MMA Heavyweight Grand Prix next month at Bellator 192.
Bellator 192 is going to be up against UFC 220 on Saturday, January 20 and Sonnen wants to see his new promotion defeat the fighter’s former home.
“I’m competitive,” Sonnen said at a Bellator MMA media luncheon. “I want to beat those guys. My ego is directly related to those numbers. I check those numbers, every time. Every interview I do, every podcast I do. I check them. It’s competition. They’re gonna have their show and we’re gonna have our show. They’re gonna fight for our viewers and we’re gonna fight for ours. And that’s it. Live audience and the gate and all the way down, to who sells the most T-shirts at the end of the night.”
It has been over four years since the last time Sonnen competed in the Octagon, which was a TKO loss to former UFC Light Heavyweight Champion Rashad Evans at UFC 167.
Besides winning the ratings battle, another couple of head to head battles that Sonnen wants his promotion to win come in attendance and live gate.
“We’ll see those things,” Sonnen said. “And I don’t wish against [the UFC]. I hope they have a great night, but it’s still competition. Only one of us is gonna have a higher number. One of us is gonna have a bigger gate, one of us is gonna have more people in attendance. So good for them. But we’re playing too.”
Bellator 192 takes place on Saturday, January 20 from The Forum in Inglewood, California with Douglas Lima and Rory MacDonald headlining. UFC 220 takes place on Saturday, January 20 from the TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts with Stipe Miocic and Francis Ngannou headlining. Fightful is providing live coverage of the events, with a post-shows podcast to follow.