Jake Shields recently told MMA Weekly that the UFC didn’t pressure him to drop from middleweight, where he held the Strikeforce title, to his natural weight class of 170-pounds for his UFC debut against Martin Kampmann at “UFC 121: Lesnar vs. Velasquez” on October 23 in Anaheim, California:
“I was pretty undecided the whole time. I just wanted big fights, and I know GSP is tied up with the Koscheck fight, so I was thinking maybe going to 85 since my weight’s already up.
They called and asked if I wanted (Martin Kampmann) at 70 and I said sure. They didn’t give me any pressure; they gave me the option. Some people were saying I was forced to go down, which certainly wasn’t the case. They said I could fight at either weight, but they offered me a fight at 70, and I was like I might as well jump and take it.”
Obviously if I’m close to getting a title shot it’s a huge factor. I’m not really sure if this is going to be a number one contender’s fight or not, it hasn’t been mentioned to me, but there’s a good chance if I go out there and look really good doing it, it’s definitely a possibility.”