Jake Shields has been released from his contract following his his recent decision loss to Hector Lombard at UFC 171 last month.
The move will raise some eyebrows given that this was the former Strikeforce middleweight champion’s first loss in his past five fights in the UFC and he was still ranked No.11 in the welterweight division.
However, Shields falls under the same category as a number of other fighters like Yushin Okami and Jon Fitch who were abrubtly shown the exit door last year due to the fact that their wrestling-orientated, decision-heavy approach to fighting is considered in some quarters to be ‘boring’.
Shields had a particularly weak striking game so he relied heavily on his grappling over the years, and to his credit it proved to be effective in winning fights.
Prior to his stint in the UFC, Shields had gone on a 15 fight winning streak, claiming both Elite XC and Strikeforce titles along the way.
He was unable to keep that run going in the UFC though, posting a 4-3 record with one additional no-contest ruling that came when a win over Dave Herman was overturned due to him failing a post-fight drugs test.
He did have his moments though – headlining opposite Georges St.Pierre in front of what remains the UFC’s biggest ever live audience, 55,724 fans at the Rogers Centre in Canada for UFC 129.
In total the 35 year-old has a 29-7-1 (1NC) career record, and the word is that he’s now actively seeking a new promotion to call home.
With World Series Of Fighting having already snapped up Okami and Fitch there’s a good chance Shields may also be on their radar too, while ONE FC could also be a possibility given that they have another notable 170lb’er in Ben Askren who could do with a big name opponent.