With Strikeforce’s first offering of Saturday Night Fights on CBS just around the corner, it’s time to begin the Bleacher Report tradition of breaking down the various fights and predicting the winners. First off I think Strikeforce needs to be applauded for putting together an absolutely stacked card that features none other than Fedor “The Last Emperor” Emelianenko, but that’s not the fight we are here to talk about today.
The fight that has me the most intrigued is the one between Jake Shields and Jason “Mayhem” Miller for the recently vacated Strikeforce middleweight title. Both fighters have an exceptional ground game and both are hungry for the gold. Today we will breakdown this fight and declare the winner via creature vs. creature and I have little doubt that all will see why Jake Shields will be victorious.
Jake Shields is a great tactician inside of the cage and will no doubt look to take this fight to the ground. Once there, the former two-time All-American wrestler from Cuesta College and Cesar Gracie BJJ black belt can administer a little ground and pound and work for a submission.
Throughout his career Shields has competed in and won many grappling championships, including an impressive third place finish at the ADCC Submission Wrestling World Championships back in 2005. Shields is by far the more seasoned grappler even though 13 of Mayhem’s 22 MMA victories have come by way of submission.
Aside from Shields’ grappling prowess is the much improved stand up he displayed against “Ruthless” Robbie Lawler. Shields was unafraid to trade with the devastating striker and took the center of the cage delivering a series of kicks and punches before ultimately finishing the fight in the first round via guillotine choke.
Team Quest product Mayhem Miller is no slouch and has a well-rounded game, but Jake Shields is coming into this fight riding a 12-fight win streak with the last eight coming by way of stoppage.
Expect to see somewhat of a back and forth battle with Jake shields controlling the majority of the action. I don’t expect Shields to finish him because Mayhem has shown great submission defense in the past and Shields still does not have the striking to be dangerous on the feet.
Jake Shields wins via unanimous decision and is crowned the new Strikeforce middleweight champion.
For those interested in seeing a differing opinion please see why my colleague E. Spencer Kyte believes Mayhem will reign supreme Saturday night: