The MMA world was slightly puzzled when the UFC released former Elite XC welterweight champion, Strikeforce middleweight champion and Shooto welterweight champion, Jake Shields (29-7-1).
However Yahoo Sports’ own Kevin Iole scored the interview to bring some answers to this situation.
“We look at everything. Money has something to do with it. I’d be lying if I said it didn’t. But that wasn’t the only reason or the main reason. It was a part of the piece of the puzzle as we were doing our evaluation of him.”
A rough evaluation that seems to ignore the fact that he’s only lost one in his last five fights.
The blemish was against Hector Lombard in his last outing at UFC 171, Iole reported that White explained that Jake was set to make 120k in his next contest. However before the loss to Lombard, Shields thought it was the last fight on his contract with the UFC.
Shield’s has gone 4-3-1, with wins over Martin Kampmann, Yoshihiro Akiyama, Tyrone Woodley and Demian Maia, and losses to Georges St. Pierre for the title, Jake Ellenburger and most recently Hector Lombard. He had a victory over Ed Herman which was reveresed into a No Contest after Jake failed the post fight drug test.
Dana proves his reasoning once more: “Mixed Martial Arts is a young man’s sport, I like Jake Shields alot. But let’s be honest here: where was he going in this division of animals we have?”
Shields was ranked #11 at the time of his release.
“He’s on the downswing and he’s never going to be the guy. He hasn’t really shown anything in his last couple of fights to make you go, “Holy [expletive].” Right now, at this point he’s just another guy.”
Dana then addresses a fighter with a similar style who suffered the same axe.
“All of the people who had been [expletive] and moaning to me about Jon Fitch when he was fighting for us and were complaining that he was boring, they all got outraged when we cut him. And it’s like the same thing now with Jake. Well, the media din’t even think he was good enough to be in the Top 10”
Nobody is completely safe under the microscope of the UFC.
“We have 500 guys under contract, which is alot more than we really need, and after each show, we really, really need to take a close look at what we do with guys.” says White.
Where will the man that has defeated four UFC Title contenders, Dan Henderson, Yushin Okami, Robbie Lawler and Carlos Condit, land?
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