Should Jake Shields Go Back to Middleweight?

That’s a question he should be asking himself after Saturday night’s demolition he received from Jake Ellenburger. Maybe that knee to the face knocked some perspective into the former Strikeforce middleweight champion, but some introspection is needed. What’s changed since he went on a 14-fight tear? Well, two of his three fights since entering the UFC have been at, in my opinion, an equal competition level. Kampmann has been a perennial contender at 170 and Jake Ellenburger is likely to be recieving the “next big thing” label at welterweight. You really can’t blame him for the GSP loss. So I’m not sure that we can say that he’s stepped up in competition since dropping down. While he was at middleweight most recently, he took out Robbie Lawler, Mayhem Miller and Dan Henderson. Not exactly slackers at 185. So what is it that has a guy that Dana White gleefully bragged about signing a year and a half ago that’s got him on the brink of being cut? Is the drop to 170 getting to be too much for him? He’s only 32, but for a guy that’s been cutting weight for most of his life between wrestling and MMA, could this finally be too much for his body? Or is this mental? For someone whose been able to sustain such a high level of competition for so long and succeed at it, that’s very hard to believe. Is 185 the better, more natural weight for Shields? Well, there is certainly evidence for that.

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