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Jake Shields Released by Strikeforce, Wants Anderson Silva

("Tell ‘em you want a $125,000 base salary to start, increasing $25,000 with every win."
"And a custom Hummer, like the ones they give to Ultimate Fighter coaches."
"And an immediate shot at Anderson Silva."
"And a percentage of the…wait, what?")

After a difficult bidding period in which Jake Shields was asking for more money than Scott Coker thought he was worth, Strikeforce released their middleweight champion yesterday, putting Shields on the open market. Shields’s Strikeforce contract ended after his April title defense against Dan Henderson, which allowed other organizations to make bids on his services. Strikeforce was in the matching stage of the process, and had the option to meet any competing offers, but ultimately decided that letting Shields walk was their best option.

As Scott Coker said on MMA Weekly radio, "The numbers, there was a big gap between what we thought was real, and what we thought was going to work, and I call that the numbers dance. It is what it is, and we’re going to probably be moving forward with that tournament."

Tensions between Shields and Strikeforce have reportedly been strained since he appeared at WEC 48, sitting next to UFC president Dana White, who mouthed "he’s mine" at the camera. Strikeforce may have even tried to block Shields from attending Saturday’s Fedor vs. Werdum show. 

It goes without saying that Jake and his father/manager Jack Shields are leaning toward the UFC and the big fights the organization holds. From Sherdog:

Prior to news of the release, Jack Shields told that he submitted the fighter’s asking price to the UFC on Wednesday and was awaiting an initial bid from the rival promotion to pass onto Strikeforce for review. The elder Shields said he submitted figures for a series of bouts he thought requisite if his son fought the top contenders in both the UFC’s welterweight and middleweight divisions.

Shields said his son would like to debut as a UFC middleweight, possibly against champion Anderson Silva, as welterweight champion Georges St. Pierre will be tied up with “The Ultimate Fighter” reality TV series and a pending bout with rival coach Josh Koscheck later this year.

“We didn’t come to agreement with Strikeforce, but Jake’s excited to challenge himself against the likes of Anderson Silva and others in the UFC,” said Shields.

Shields obviously belongs in the UFC, but he might be overeager in his desire to fight Silva or GSP, at least right away. After all, he began competing as a middleweight in Strikeforce more out of necessity than anything else. I’d think Shields would need at least one qualifying fight at welterweight before taking on GSP, and several at middleweight before the name Anderson Silva even crosses his mind. Your thoughts?

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stopdrinkingpee- July 1, 2010 at 9:22 pm
I think Shields would deserve an immediate shot against a contender in either weight class, and one win should put him up against the champ. Give him Martin Kampmann or the winner of Marquardt/Palhares or something, and if he wins, I have no problem with him fighting for the belt next time out.
Ajax- July 1, 2010 at 8:17 pm
Smart move by Shields asking for A. Silva instead of GSP. He has a better chance of out-wrestling Silva, and if he loses it isnt that big of a hit, since he would be losing to a top P4P fighter and champion in a weightclass above his "natural" weightclass.
remeadial- July 1, 2010 at 6:15 pm
This guy is hilarious. If Silva has trouble selling fights because he pulls crazy stuff ... Jake Shields v. Silva won't sell fights! He is the most boring fighter in MMA. It's like the revenge of the nerds fighting Ogre. There had better be some serious inventions by Wormser or this fight is a foregone conclusion.

GSP! Silliness. Jake Shields should just pick his paycheck and fight guys he can beat, that is the Strikeforce way. He would lose to a ton of guys in the division.
Keyser Soze- July 1, 2010 at 4:10 pm
If Shields does sign with the UFC, and he most likely will, an immediate title shot vs either GSP or Silva is not a good idea. He'll lose his first fight in, and lose value getting paid in subsequent fights. Building him up is the logical way to handle Shields, and there's good fights at either weight class to keep Shields interested and hungry.

IMO, Shields' path to the title would be easier in MW than WW, and he's already at weight so the transition to the UFC would be minimal.

If he comes in at MW, there's Belfort, Maia and Wandy all healing up so it's either Belcher, Okami or Bisping. I figure Okami or Bisping first, then Marquardt, Belfort or Wanderlei. If he can take the two or three victories against these guys, his purse goes up and he gets his chance at the champ. Sonnen will be out recuperating for a while after August, so he'll be out of the picture.

Shields' lay and pray could pay dividends vs. Okami, Bisping, Belfort and Wanderlei, and we saw how weill LnP worked vs. Marquardt. Hence my stating the path would be easier at MW.

Outside of the top 4 or 5 WW's there isn't a whole lot of real danger to Shields, but if he wants GSP's strap, a title shot should be earned. Fitch and Koscheck could cause real problems for Shields, and Alves is still hungry.

I would expect an announcement at Saturday's PPV. I'm sure DW already has his plan and pay worked out in advance for Shields, waiting until the release was a formality. There is good competition and good fights in the UFC in either division for Shields, but I still don't believe he has the chops to knock off GSP or Silva.
ccman- July 1, 2010 at 2:49 pm

No. If the sheilds hendo fight had ufc in the center he would not get a title shot. Hendo was released for a reason. Part money, part he was quickly showing decline. Just SF has noone to guage talent to recognize it.

And fyi: all akoi and gomi showed us was exactly how weak dream really is. I argued this when we debated how good is moussaimonths back before Mo showed us. Step outside the ufc and its a HUGE drop. Like goin to tripple A. There's a couple who can step up but not many who can stay.
dranokills- July 1, 2010 at 2:11 pm
Hey Jake, come bring that shiny belt, and put it right here in this trash can....yeah good dog, now get to the middle of the pack you curtain puller... yawn.
MediumRare- July 1, 2010 at 1:43 pm
Headline should read:

"Jake Shields Released by Strikeforce, Wants To Get Face Raped and Brought Back to Reality"
BossNasty- July 1, 2010 at 12:28 pm

Humiliated Dan Henderson? Shields barely escaped being knocked out and out wrestled one of the 12 apostles. That's like saying Klitchko just fought last weekend and humiliated Ali. Even still he didn't even finish DH. I don't see how people can hype him like they do. I think Kampman would be a good fight and as much as I hate Bisbitch I meean Bisbing, I think Bisbing would beat Shields.
mt59801- July 1, 2010 at 12:28 pm
I'd watch that fight. I'm not a sheilds fan but I also thought hendo was going to cage rape him, which didn't happen. I'll give him credit for being a better fighter than I thought he was, and I'd give him a decent chance @ silva. Go back and watch hendo vs Silva , it's probably the closest silva has ever been to losing a UFC fight. Based on his performance against hendo I don't his request is without merit. I still don't like the guy, but I'd like to see what he can do.
sp00ki kabuki- July 1, 2010 at 12:23 pm
since a.s. is fighting sonnen in aug, have sheilds fight belfort in sept or oct for #1 contender. then have the winners fight in feb or march
Charming Charlie- July 1, 2010 at 12:10 pm
Imagine Shields and Hendo were both fighting in a UFC labled octagon. Now does he deserve a title shot?
TheArtof8Limbs- July 1, 2010 at 11:48 am
i agree. Kampmann
ReDx- July 1, 2010 at 11:19 am
Im betting he gets Bisping first
ArmFarmer- July 1, 2010 at 10:53 am
lol The guy just humiliated Dan Henderson and you think Kampman would kill him?? If that fight happens I would be shocked if Kampman was the betting favorite. Mayhem > Kampman as well
TheNastyBoy- July 1, 2010 at 10:53 am
I for one would like to see Alan Belcher against Sheilds. I think that would be a great introductory fight for him.
Jugger- July 1, 2010 at 10:52 am
MiddleEasy says:

"That's why when Frank Shamrock proclaims Jake Shields to be the 'most boring fighter he's ever seen' and goes so far to say that 'his performance kills Strikeforce's ratings', then you have to assume the dude knows what he's talking about."

I don't know where he got those quotes, but they're hilarious... ...and true. Strikeforce let him go because he's BORING. Companies like Strikeforce don't need the best fighters. They need good fighters that make good, watchable fights.

Note: This is what Bellator is doing right. Screw fighter rankings. Just find good, technical fighters, match them up wisely, and let them attract attention with the fireworks and crazy submissions. Have you ever noticed that most of the UFC's that have "huge names" tend to be snoozers, while that one PPV you didn't get because it didn't have any household names or title fights turned out to have the best fights of the year?
Almost North- July 1, 2010 at 10:34 am
Dana is going to sign him for about 5 bucks. Lost your leverage Jakey boy.
MMAINMYBLOOD- July 1, 2010 at 10:32 am
Kampman would kill shields literally.... but Belfort?? THats a scary good fight imo... Belfort wow... good call. I would like to see that... I think Belfort wins a good fight tho.
Taterfan- July 1, 2010 at 10:09 am
How about Belfort v Shields, winner gets a shot at the title. Be a good chance for either to prove they're worthy.
Zee German- July 1, 2010 at 9:24 am
The fact that Coker released Shields will really mess up his negotiation talks with the UFC. He'll get probably half the price he was asking for now that he has no leverage anymore.
cecils_pupils- July 1, 2010 at 9:20 am
While everyone is trying to figure out who he should fight first, the UFC is now facing a potential epidemic as Jake Shields brings with him the highest concentration of the dreaded staphylococcus bacteria known to man.
ArmFarmer- July 1, 2010 at 8:48 am

Lutter looked defeated before he even got in the cage. He didn't even make weight because he said he "had a hard time getting motivated"(wtf), and despite coming in overweight he still looked pale and drained. The guy lacks heart, dedication, mental toughness, and the will to win. It wasn't his skills that lost him that fight, it was his attitude and mental weakness. Not trying to take away from A. Silva it was an impressive win anyway especially with the submission but Lutter didn't bring his A game.. or B game for that matter.
NOTSOB- July 1, 2010 at 8:48 am
even if he can take down A.silva, what is he gonna do? hes gonna get full mount and unleash his baby punches on him?
glassjawsh- July 1, 2010 at 8:46 am
this is what happens when one orginization treats somene like a star. They get an over hyped opinion of themselves and start demanding things and sound retarded. am i the only one who feels like Shields might end up back in Strikeforce? especially when he gets offered a 50k/50k contract from DW?
bitteralex- July 1, 2010 at 8:40 am
i think shields has let this free agency thing get to his head... to ask for an immediate match against one of the top pound-for-pound fighters in the world??
i'll admit he shocked a lot of people when he beat hendo (myself included).. but silva is NOT hendo...
shields might have been a title-holder.. but that was in strikeforce... the ufc is a different animal....

i like shields but i never had him pegged as a top 5 guy