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Thread: 'Overlooked' Jake Shields surveys welterweight landscape ahead of Hector Lombard bout

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    Default 'Overlooked' Jake Shields surveys welterweight landscape ahead of Hector Lombard bout

    'Overlooked' Jake Shields surveys welterweight landscape ahead of Hector Lombard bout at UFC 171
    http://www.mmafighting.com/2014/3/11...scape-ahead-of
    "No, I haven't really talked to [UFC] about [their plans]. I'm just hoping to go out there and hopefully win and hopefully also finish a fight," Shields told Ariel Helwani on Monday's The MMA Hour. "Go out there and beat him, especially in a dominant fashion. I think it'd make a good case for a title shot, so it's up to me to go out and do what I need to do on Saturday and then worry about the UFC from there."

    Shields, 34, has certainly been doing well of late. He hasn't outright lost since September of 2011 to Jake Ellenberger, a bout he took just days after his father passed. While his win over Ed Herman in August of 2012 was turned into a no-contest due to Shields testing positive for an undisclosed banned substance, he's essentially defeated four straight opponents since his last loss. He most recently topped Demian Maia in October of 2013 and Tyron Woodley in June of 2013, two highly-ranked welterweight competitors.
    That's where things get interesting. Since losing to Shields, Woodley earned his way back into the win column with a devastating knockout win over Josh Koscheck in November. Yet, Woodley is in the co-main event opposite top contender Carlos Condit in a bout some speculate could set up the next fighter to get a crack at a title shot.

    For Shields, this isn't a particularly fair set of events given all he's had to go through to get where he's currently sitting.

    "[Our] fight was so recent. It was less than a year ago, so I think I should fight in the co-main event against Condit, but it is what it is," he told Helwani. "It's not that big of a deal, but if he was to win and they gave him a title shot, that'd be unfair. I just beat him. Especially coming off a big win, too. It'd be one thing if I lost and he hadn't, but I've had bigger wins since then. So to give him a title shot would be completely unfair, but again, I don't make those decisions. I just have to worry about beating Hector."

    Shields isn't naive about why Woodley appears to be getting fast tracked, although he tries to not over speculate. "I get overlooked," he confesses. "You know what my problem is? Sometimes my fights have been a little too close. I need to go out there and put some dominant wins together.

    "It's hard to say the exact reasons. I definitely feel like I'm overlooked a little bit, going on a big win streak with wins over my last couple, Maia and Woodley are big, big wins."

    And sure, Shields agrees, "winning helps, but it also has to be entertaining." He knows close fights that are grappling-centric don't always cut it. In his mind, however, all of that is easier said than done when facing the kind of talent he is, fight in and fight out.

    "I did well [against Maia]," he argues. "I didn't finish him, but Maia is a phenomenal fighter. He's really tough and he didn't give me much. His grappling was so good, it was hard to do anything. I was definitely happy i won, but again, obviously it would've been a lot better if I could've finished him."

    That's what Shields says he plans to do Saturday against Lombard, but also notes that's significantly easier said than done. Lombard, a long-time middleweight talent, recently dropped down to welterweight and in his debut at UFC 166 in October against Nate Marquardt, looked ultra impressive. Shields is the first to acknowledge this, but says one great fight, especially a short one, doesn't mean the Cuban-Australian has reinvented his career.

    "He looked great, but it was so short it's hard to judge too much," Shields said. "He looked really, really fast and explosive and in good shape. I'm expecting him to be a tough fight. He definitely looked good in that fight."

    The San Francisco-based fighter also knows he can't be foolish about his strategy: do what you do best and don't take unnecessary risks.

    "Definitely, it's a no-brainer I want to take it to the ground," Shields confesses about his strategy against Lombard. "He's got too much power. He's too vicious there, but I am willing to stand with him for a while and feel things out, but after a while at some point I hope to get it to the ground and submit him."

    Shields is right to prioritize a dangerous opponent in Lombard the way he is, but the questions about where it's all headed are unavoidable. Shields' contract is soon coming to an end, he's racking up win after win and to add more fuel to the fire, former champion Georges St-Pierre told the media recently he believes Shields will be the eventual champion in the division.

    "Hopefully he's right," Shields says when learning of St-Pierre's statements. "I like GSP a lot. That's cool he said that. It makes me feel great. Someone told me [he thought] I was the toughest guy he fought before, I heard.

    "I've always respected GSP a lot. He's a guy I've looked up to, so that's cool for him to say that."

    Still, Shields is casting an eye toward what is going on in his division, not what could happen or has happened. With that, he admits he's surprised with the resurgence of Robbie Lawler, who fights Johny Hendricks for the vacant welterweight title in Saturday's main event. Of note is the fact that Shields holds a win from 2009 over Lawler, one he earned quickly and almost too easily.

    "I thought [Lawler] was kind of falling off after I beat him. I beat him, I won't say easily because anything can happen, but I think it was a couple-minute fight. I got him in a guillotine. I think he might've lost one after that even to some body. I remember thinking, 'Aw, Lawler's probably done.' I liked him, but him coming back is great because he's always a guy I actually respected and liked. He's looked great and beating Rory MacDonald is not an easy thing to do."

    Does that mean he believes Lawler will be the new welterweight champion of the UFC? Probably not.

    "It's a close fight [with Hendricks], but I'm probably picking Hendricks off the wrestling and all that. I was also picking Rory MacDonald to beat Lawler, so I think maybe Lawler's gotten a lot better than I'm giving him credit for. I'd like to see Lawler win, but if I have to pick, I'll go with Hendricks."

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    He's definitely overlooked. It should really be him vs Condit. Obviously, UFC isn't a fan of his style, which is why they didn't sign Askren and cut guys like Fitch and Okami. I'm afraid that if Shields gets KO'ed, he may get cut which would be extremely bullshit.

    I know a lot of people hate on Shields but I'm hoping he dominates Lombard with his grappling.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dr. MMA View Post
    He's definitely overlooked. It should really be him vs Condit. Obviously, UFC isn't a fan of his style, which is why they didn't sign Askren and cut guys like Fitch and Okami. I'm afraid that if Shields gets KO'ed, he may get cut which would be extremely bullshit.

    I know a lot of people hate on Shields but I'm hoping he dominates Lombard with his grappling.
    He is definitely getting KO'd by Ellenberger in a minute set him back so far in the title picture as the UFC looks for every excuse to not give a "boring" fighter a chance at contention ie. Jon Fitch after his first GSP fight.

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    Quote Originally Posted by IceCold48 View Post
    He is definitely getting KO'd by Ellenberger in a minute set him back so far in the title picture as the UFC looks for every excuse to not give a "boring" fighter a chance at contention ie. Jon Fitch after his first GSP fight.
    There was a bit of an asterisk to that KO as Shields' dad just passed away. A lot of people realize that he was unlikely to be himself that night. The one big difference between Fitch and Shields is that Fitch got his handed to him badly by GSP. It was the one decision win that GSP had that people could not say "well he wasn't trying to finish". GSP absolutely massacred him. Even if Fitch was working his way back up, a lot of people were truly not interested in the rematch because of how lopsided it was. Shields, on the other hand, arguably took two rounds from GSP and now GSP is not even champ.

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    I dont see this ending well for Shields... I think he is going mimi's.

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    I think Shields is going to wrestle fuck him into a living death
    Quote Originally Posted by Sick_Lunatic View Post
    I've always liked strudel.



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    Quote Originally Posted by Dr. MMA View Post
    There was a bit of an asterisk to that KO as Shields' dad just passed away. A lot of people realize that he was unlikely to be himself that night. The one big difference between Fitch and Shields is that Fitch got his handed to him badly by GSP. It was the one decision win that GSP had that people could not say "well he wasn't trying to finish". GSP absolutely massacred him. Even if Fitch was working his way back up, a lot of people were truly not interested in the rematch because of how lopsided it was. Shields, on the other hand, arguably took two rounds from GSP and now GSP is not even champ.
    Yes, I agree with the thing on Jake's dad I was just referring to how the UFC views their contenders. I wasn't saying that because of that fight he shouldn't be a contender anymore.

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    Quote Originally Posted by KevoOnTheRadio View Post
    I think Shields is going to wrestle fuck him into a living death
    That is his only option to win this fight.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dr. MMA View Post
    There was a bit of an asterisk to that KO as Shields' dad just passed away. A lot of people realize that he was unlikely to be himself that night. The one big difference between Fitch and Shields is that Fitch got his handed to him badly by GSP. It was the one decision win that GSP had that people could not say "well he wasn't trying to finish". GSP absolutely massacred him. Even if Fitch was working his way back up, a lot of people were truly not interested in the rematch because of how lopsided it was. Shields, on the other hand, arguably took two rounds from GSP and now GSP is not even champ.
    What round was the eye poke in the Shields bout? I've always put an asterisk next to that GSP wincing win because he was clearly messed up over the second half of that fight and I remember just hoping his eye didn't get the fight stopped.

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    Lombard's got crazy balance and some pretty top notch TDD, but I always question him as I don't believe his roster is loaded with what I'd dean "worldbeaters" and Shields could've very easily dropped either of his last two(I had both scored for Maia and Woodley respectively) and he kinda fucked up by NCing the Ed Herman bout.

    That's not to specifically devalue Shields' grappling talents(his striking is still incredibly poor at this stage in his MMA progression, which will always impede on him getting to the next level IMO), but I've personally not seen the same quality of performances out of Jake since he came back down from MW to join the UFC. Since the Kampmann fight, Jake's looked tired and drawn out, he was undersized at MW but I think he put on too much muscle in his SF run and may still be feeling the after effects.

    I'm thinking Lombard cracks him if he can't take it down and keep it down and Shields is going to have to be very careful if he wants to clinch and grind, as Lombard will definitely look to throw him.

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