Now that the UFC and Strikeforce are under the same ownership, the talk of super fights to merge titles somewhere down the road simply can’t be avoided.
As much as UFC president Dana White says everything is “business as usual,” no one can help but think about match-ups like dueling lightweight champions Gilbert Melendez and Frankie Edgar fighting it out to declare the world’s No. 1 155-pounder.
One fight that fans can cross off their “super fight” agenda right now is a welterweight bout between Nick Diaz and Jake Shields. As a matter of fact, you can scratch that fight from ever happening at any weight class.
The subject of teammate vs. teammate in the camp where Shields and Diaz train just doesn’t come up. Now understand, if Shields wins at UFC 129, he will become the UFC welterweight champion, while his good friend and teammate Diaz holds the belt in Strikeforce.
They won’t make problems for their bosses if they propose a fight between the two champions, one of them will just leave the weight class.
“Me and Nick aren’t going to fight if the belts merge,” Shields said in an interview with MMAWeekly Radio. “We’ll avoid each other. I’ll move up or he’ll move up, just like what we did in Strikeforce.”
Shields was the most dominant welterweight and EliteXC champion when that promotion was bought up by Strikeforce, but as opposed to dealing with a potential fight with Diaz, he moved up to 185 pounds.
It didn’t turn out too bad for him either. Shields went on to dominate Robbie Lawler, Jason “Mayhem” Miller, and Dan Henderson, becoming the Strikeforce middleweight champion in the process.
If the situation is ever brought up again, Shields won’t make trouble. There will be no debate. There will be no situation like the current one between former teammates Rashad Evans and UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones.
“I’m not one to sit there and stir up trouble and be like ‘I’m not going to fight,’ but we’ll find ways around it. One of us will drop down or up, we’ll avoid each other,” Shields said.
“Obviously we’re not going to deadlock a weight (class), we’re the two best guys and just sit around. We’ll find away to avoid it.”
Diaz may have already found a new way to keep himself busy and it has nothing to do with defending his welterweight belt in Strikeforce or fighting in the UFC. He’s taken up the charge to try his hand at professional boxing and may debut against an opponent later this year.
Unlike other teammate situations, Shields and Diaz believe that their situation is more like family, and blood really is thicker that water, or in this case, even gold.
“That was the case in Strikeforce, we were both at 170,” Shields said. “That’s why I decided to jump up to 85. I’d be willing to jump up again if that’s the situation.
To hear the entire interview with UFC 129 main event fighter Jake Shields, tune into MMAWeekly Radio on Monday night at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT.
© 2011 MMA Weekly All Rights Reserved.