Taking some flak following the release of former No. 1 welterweight contender Jake Shields, UFC president Dana White is trying to illuminate fans on the decision. Speaking with Yahoo! Sports' Kevin Iole, White says money was just one factor in parting ways with Shields.
"We look at everything," White said. "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."
According to Iole, White explained that Shields was due to make $120,000 in his next bout, but prior to his UFC 171 loss to Hector Lombard, Shields claimed to believe the fight was the last of his contract. Shields reiterated the point Mar. 4 telling the guys at MMA Junkie Radio: 'I can't go out and lose to Hector and ask for more money, so I've got to take it one step at a time. I've got a beast standing in front of me next week.' Although the Texas Athletic Commission doesn't officially release fighter pay info Shields' base pay for the event was reported to be approximately $75,000.
"Mixed martial arts is a young man's game," White said. "I like Jake Shields a lot. But let's be honest here: Where was he going in this [welterweight] division of animals we have? He's on the downswing, and he's never going to be the guy. His stand-up never improved. 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.
"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 so boring, they all got outraged when we cut him. And it's like the same thing now with Jake. Well, the media didn't even think he was good enough to be in the Top 10."
Appearing as a guest on Ariel Helwani's The MMA Hour, Shields' manager Lex McMahon sounded blind-sided by the news.
"To lose one fight and then all of a sudden be out of a job was something that I believe was surprising and not contemplated," McMahon admitted. "To be honest, we were really positioned and looking for Jake as a potential title contender, given the mix of the landscape after Georges (St-Pierre) retired. Jake had beaten pretty much everybody that was out there. He beat Condit, he beat Woodley, he beat Maia. So really, there wasn't too many other options. With the right performance, I think (he could've been fighting for the title)."
As of Monday night Shields was still slotted as the No. 11 welterweight in the promotion's rankings, but that's sure to change.
"We have 500 guys under contract, which is a lot more than we really need, and after each show, we really, really need to take a close look at what we do with guys," White said.
5 MUST-READ STORIES
It's Tuesday so make sure to check out The MMA Hour featuring The Fight Network's John Pollock, Akira Corassani, Holly Holm and her manager Lenny Fresquez, Tim Kennedy, Andre Fili, John Hackleman, Jake Shields' manager Lex McMahon and Tyrone Spong.
Dana White says getting a tweet from Muhammed Ali made his life.
Jon Jones on GSP, Rory and Glover.
Highlights from Bellator 115.
Godzilla meets 10th Planet.
Get well soon.
6 days post surgery. Feeling pretty good http://t.co/EtmU43bzqo— Chris Weidman (@ChrisWeidmanUFC) April 7, 2014
Acreditar em você é o remédio da superação !!! Always believe on you. Boa semana a todos!!!... http://t.co/an6IJBL8n8— Anderson Silva (@SpiderAnderson) April 7, 2014
Who had to come up with Bruce's stats? #100everything
Anthony Pettis (@Showtimepettis) April 8, 2014
Just signed with WSOF it feeling good to be apart of something different its time to make some real money and get that belt.— Melvin Guillard (@Young__Assassin) April 8, 2014
Cub Swanson (@CubSwanson) April 8, 2014
Wanted more from this pic.
This is once again part of my meals. I don't miss it lol. DC http://t.co/zj2lzy7Wt4— Daniel Cormier (@dc_mma) April 8, 2014
ANYBODY READY TO THROW THUNDA??? $500 TO ANYBODY THAT CAN KNOCK ME OUT AT GRUDGE TOMORROW AT 11am SPARRING!!!!! TELL UM U HERE FOR PATTY!!!!— Pat Barry (@HypeOrDie) April 8, 2014
Announced yesterday (Apr. 8 2014)
Eduardo Dantas vs. Joe Warren at Bellator 118
Rony Jason vs. Robbie Peralta at UFC Fight Night: Dos Santos vs. Miocic
FANPOST OF THE DAY
Today's Fanpost of the Day comes via Tyler212.
Bellator 116 main card breakdown!
Lavar Johnson vs Blagoi Ivanov headline Bellator 116 this Friday in Temecula, California. Johnson and Blagoi will be fighting for a spot in the Heavyweight tournament finals. Siala-mou Siliga and Alexander Volkov will also be trying to punch their ticket to the Heaveyweight finals. The other fights on the main card include the Welterweight tournament semifinal, between Nathan Coy vs Adam McDonough, and a Light Heavyweight feature fight between Joey Beltran and Vladimir Matyushenko.
Beltran vs Matyushenko:
Beltran was last seen getting knocked out by Rampage Jackson, while Matyushenko won a tedious decision over Houston Alexander. Beltran was badly overmatched against Rampage but against Matyushenko, this shouldn't be the case. Matyushenko looked very tired and very OLD in his last fight. I don't think he will last against Beltran and his aggressiveness.
Result: Beltran wins via 2nd rnd tko
Check out the rest of the post here.
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