Surging undefeated Welsh bantamweight Jack Shore is staying positive in the light of his recently cancelled bout with Geraldo de Freitas, which was due to take place on the main card of UFC London this weekend, and believes the UFC will “do the right thing” when it comes to compensating fighters who were preparing for the event.
UFC London was officially cancelled on Monday due to coronavirus concerns, just days before the event was set to take place at The o2, but Shore is remaining upbeat in light of the global pandemic.
“Physically, I’m all good,” Shore told MMA Fighting’s Eurobash podcast.
“It’s obviously been a tough couple of days mentally, since about Wednesday. Just based on looking at the news and Twitter and stuff like that, I sort of had an idea that things weren’t going to run smoothly and then yesterday we got the news of everything. It’s been a stressful week, but I’m fit and healthy so I can’t complain.”
Although it seemed as though UFC were trying to relocate the entire card to the U.S. at one point, Shore did not have any communication with the promotion and acknowledged that keeping the main event between Leon Edwards and Tyron Woodley alive was probably the main concern.
“Straightaway I knew that wouldn’t be a logistical option just based on the travel ban and obviously, you need a visa and that to get over there and that can be a 10-day turnaround,” Shore explained.
“Pretty much, I would’ve had to get a visa and board a plane last night or in the early hours of this morning for that to have happened. It never really seemed like that was an option, they never came to me and said, ‘Look, we’re going to try and move your fight to the U.S.,’ and I can imagine with Leon Edwards and Tyron Woodley being the main event they were the priority, so I’m not salty about it or anything. It’s just one of those things, what can you do, it’s out of everyone’s hands at the minute.”
Despite his months of preparation, Shore is adamant that “there’s no point crying over spilled milk.”
“I’m just as gutted as everyone else on the card not to be fighting,” Shore said. “I live and breathe the fight life, I’m never out of the gym and this has been on my mind since just before Christmas, so for three or four months it’s all I’ve been thinking about - every minute of every day. For that to be taken away when it’s so close to happening, it’s heartbreaking. At the same time, it’s out of my control, it’s out of the UFC’s control. What can you do? There’s no point in crying over spilled milk. I could sit here and bitch and moan, tell you how pissed off I am and start slagging people off, but it’s not going to change things, it’s not going to help make me fight Saturday - it’s just one of those things.”
Although he doesn’t know when he will be back in action, Shore understands that it’s impossible to plan anything at the moment as the virus continues to take grip of the globe.
“I haven’t spoke to the UFC directly, obviously Graham [Boylan] does all that for me he’s my manager - that’s what I pay him for he just takes all the stress and I let him relay it back to me,” Shore said, laughing.
“I know he’s spoke to them, but I know it’s a tough one because they can’t set anything in stone like, ‘You’re fighting in four weeks, or six weeks,’ because we don’t know what’s going to happen. I keep up to date online, I know the Vegas commission have got a meeting on the 25th and the way things are going I wouldn’t be surprised if we see them cancel all of these big events. It could be a matter where they say, ‘Look, you’re fighting in four weeks,’ but the worst case it could be a couple of months before I get out there again. I just gotta stay in the gym, stay mentally positive and keep my fingers crossed that we get the show back on the road sooner rather than later.”
While Cage Warriors have managed to get some UFC London fights on their upcoming card this Friday in Manchester, Shore knew that it was always going to be a struggle for him to end up in a similar position with his opponent hailing from South America.
And even though he didn’t get to make his second walk to the Octagon, “Tank” is confident the UFC will compensate the fighters for their preparations for the event.
“I think they will [compensate the fighters],” Shore said.
“I’ve had a little chat with Graham about it. I don’t think anything is set in stone, but he’s confident that they will compensate us. It would make a massive difference to all of us fighters. Not just me, I know everyone on the card puts a lot of time and money into these camps. I’m fortunate that I don’t have kids or nothing like that, but there are obviously people on the card who have families to feed. Fighting is the way they feed their families, so fingers crossed, if those guys get compensated more than I do it wouldn’t bother me at all. It’s a tough situation for everyone to be in with what’s going on, we don’t even know if we’re going to fight in the next six or eight weeks - it could even be longer than that. It would be nice to see the guys who got families to feed get that money to take care and give them a bit of security. I’m confident the UFC will do the right thing. I know Bellator did so I can’t see why they wouldn’t. They’re always good, they look after their fighters during fight week and outside of fight week. It’s not our fault the show has been cancelled, but it’s not their fault either. Fingers crossed they’ve got enough money, and they’ll look after us.”
Check out Jack Shore’s latest appearance on Eurobash. His interview begins at 40:00.