Just about two months shy of making his fourth straight welterweight appearance, Jake Shields is looking at moving back up to 185lbs.
The former Strikeforce middleweight champion has gone 1-2 on his most recent run at 170lbs. and, with his longtime friend and training partner Nick Diaz currently fighting at the top of the welterweight division, things are conspiring to see Shields back at 185lbs. As he recently told MMAWeekly, the move up in weight is looking more and more enticing.
“I would have no problem fighting there,” Shields said of 185lbs. “It’s something I’ve thought about before and I was thinking about it (before) this fight, but they offered me this fight (and) I took it. Especially with my teammate, Nick Diaz, challenging for the welterweight title, it’s definitely in the back of my mind going up to 185 (pounds).”
“This fight” is of course in reference to his impending UFC 144: Edgar vs. Henderson meeting against Yoshihiro Akiyama, which is to take place on February 26 at the Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan.
Whether or not Shields wins or loses a move to middleweight may do him good, as the only victory he’s picked up since making a tough drop to welterweight has been a controversial split decision over Martin Kampmann. From there, he’s gone on to lose a decision to UFC welterweight champ Georges St-Pierre and get TKOed by a surging Jake Ellenberger.