Image via Esther Lin of MMA Fighting
In an intriguing Middleweight fight at the UFC 150 PPV, former Welterweight #1 contender Jake Shields (27-6-1 MMA; 2-2 UFC) faces Ed Herman (20-7 MMA; 7-5 UFC). This is the third of five main card fights. Neither man is currently ranked in the USA TODAY / MMA Nation Consensus MMA Rankings, though to be fair to Shields, he was in the top 10 of the Middleweight division before he made the move to Welterweight in 2010. The UFC 150 PPV airs live Saturday night August 11 at 10 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. PT.
The story of this fight focuses squarely on Shields. The former UFC Welterweight title challenger makes the move back up to Middleweight here. While it's his UFC Middleweight debut, he's no stranger to the division. He'll look to make another UFC title run starting tonight, while Herman will try to play spoiler. It should be a good clash between two experienced veterans.
How do these two stack up?
Shields: 33 years old | 6'0" | 72" reach
Herman: 31 years old | 6'2" | 75" reach
What have these two done recently?
How did these two get here?
Jake Shields came to the UFC in 2010 behind a wall of hype. His 6 year undefeated streak, combined with his Strikeforce and EliteXC titles, made him an immediate contender for GSP and the Welterweight title. But after a 2-2 UFC run at 170, he moves back up to 185. That's where he was fighting in Strikeforce, and where he had great success with wins over Jason Miller and Dan Henderson. Some would argue (and I agree) that Shields is better at Middleweight than at Welterweight. A ground specialist out of the Cesar Gracie camp, Shields is absolutely a threat to the very best at 185. I'm very interested to see how this move works out for him.
Ed "Short Fuse" Herman is a 6 year UFC veteran, coming to the company through season 3 of The Ultimate Fighter. He struggled to find consistency, going 4-5 in his first three years inside the Octagon. From 2009-2011, he missed almost two years due to injury, and while that would totally derail many fighters, Herman came back strong. He's undefeated at 3-0 since that time off, with stoppages in all of those wins. Like Mike Swick last weekend, Herman is a feel good story for a certain generation of UFC fans, and if he can pull off the upset here, it will be huge for him.
Why should you care?
Shields at 185 has a ton of potential, but I'm also intrigued by Herman's post-injury career renaissance. I'm very interested to see just how this one plays out.
More UFC 150 preview coverage from Bloody Elbow after the jump.