Former UFC, Pancrase and Strikeforce champ Frank Shamrock talked to Submission Radio about the two biggest UFC bouts on the horizon and made his picks. Regarding UFC 178's Jon Jones Light Heavyweight title defense against Daniel Cormier, here's what Shamrock has to say, "I honestly think that Daniel Cormier is probably the most well trained wrestler/boxer, you know sort of MMA fighter in this era, and I don't think Jon Jones is gonna get away from him or be able to knock him out. So you know, I think while Jones is probably 2 or 3 times the athlete, you know the rules of MMA dictate (that) if you're on top and your punching first, you know if you cut the angle, you're doing the damage, and I just think Cormier's gonna do all the damage."
When it comes to next year's Anderson Silva vs. Nick Diaz superfight, Shamrock is similarly opinionated, "I'm super excited about the Silva fight. I think they're both at the time in their career where only the biggest, you know moments matter, like that was in like the last 10 years of my career. This fight needed to happen and I'm super excited about it."
He's also got a clear favorite in the Silva vs. Diaz bout.
"The problem with that fight is Diaz's takedowns aren't like impacting strong. You know he's like grab, and turn angle, but it's not like rip you down and take you down. And Silva's a guy you've gotta blast through with a strong take down. So my concern with that fight is that as it progresses, the length, the confidence of Silva is gonna damage Diaz, and the inability to take him down is gonna damage him more, and I don't think Diaz is gonna come out winning that fight."
Frank told SR about his own bout with Nick Diaz, the final bout of his career.
"Fighting Nick Diaz, I knew it was time. It was a risk, it was time. I knew that I needed to fight somebody very relevant, I knew showtime needed a huge event. It was one of those other moments where I was like 'ah, I gotta go to the next level here'. But my body just wouldn't keep pace, and every time I tried to floor it, and every time I tried really, really hard, things where just popping and breaking, and I went into the fight broken. And then after the fight, it was just, you know this fight was the only time where I turned the switch and nothing happened. It's the only time ever, no matter how broken or jacked up (I was), where I went 'oh here we go!' and nothing happened. And I thought it was a fluke, so I went back, I restrengthened everything and I tried again, and my body just wouldn't hold up, and that's when I knew, it's like wow the car's broken, you know it's time to park it. It's time to find a nice garage and push it in there."
Shamrock also commented on a fight that might have been, himself vs. Anderson Silva."Totally. I thought that I'd fight 'till I was 45. And I remember Anderson Silva who was a young man when I was a young man. You know, (he) was around the game, was learning, was studying. I remember him as the soft spoken Muay Thai guy. To see his development and to see his progress in MMA, I always knew, it's like Martial Arts. The guys who keep studying will eventually be the guys at the front going 'check this out.'
"I always knew that eventually these guys would come back around and I'd be in line to face him (Anderson), Vitor, you know, all those guys. But I also knew my back has been jacked since I was 16. You know, when I was 16 my leg went numb and the doctors where like 'you need surgery, you're never gonna play sports, and you're gonna be a patient for the rest of your life'. And I was like 'no way, I wanna be a world champion'. So I've had this injury, this progressive problem that I knew was going to catch up to me. And unfortunately it caught up to me in my third phase of my career, when I was swinging against (Nick) Diaz."