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Posted on September 16, 2011 by John Petit

Breaking Down Fight Night 25 Main Event: Shields Vs. Ellenberger
ufc fight night 25
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This fight is an analysts nightmare. We have two high caliber fighters with distinctly different advantages and we have to sort why we think another will win. The phrase “This will be a close fight” gets thrown around way to much for my liking, but this is one I wouldn’t hesitate using it on.

Jake Shields is coming off a loss in the biggest fight of his career. A pressure cooker event, that took place in front of 55,000 screaming Canadian fans, where he squared for 5 rounds with current welterweight champion Georges St. Pierre and lost via decision. Shields looked flat in the fight, and on only a few occasions was he really able to muscle around GSP.  To his credit he was able to win a round or two in the fight, and that is something that hasn’t been in years against GSP. The 26-5-1 fighter will have a slight advantage in experience, and have a large advantage in the grappling and Jiu-Jitsu department.

Its also important to mention that Jake Shields unexpectedly lost his father a few weeks ago. Jake was very close with his father, who was also his manager, and the two were often seen together. Jake has said that his father would want him to continue and fight on as the reason he didn’t drop out of the fight-which many people thought he would. This will make it an emotionally charged evening for Shields.

Jake Ellenberger, who is 24-5 as a pro and 4-1 in the UFC, is riding a 4 fight winning streak. He lost in his first UFC bout against current #1 contender Carlos Condit, and has put up wins against Mike Pyle, John Howard, Carlos Rocha and Sean Pierson. Ellenberger finished 3 of those 4 fights with only Rocha pushing it to a decision. That fight is actually a window into what could happen in this fight. Rocha, like Shields, has excellent jiu-jitsu and Ellenberger displayed some top shelf defense in the first round against him. It was one of the best grappling moments I saw this year. Ellenberger will have the advantage in the stand up department, and his cardio has proven to be better.

I don’t see Ellenberger winning this one on the feet as Shields hasn’t been TKO’d in 10 years. There are ways for Ellenberger to win this bout, but that is only if you count on Shields gassing out in the third round. I can’t imagine a coach counting on something like that while game planning against someone like Shields. I think Shields is going to be able to squeak out at least 2 rounds in the fight to get himself the decision win, but as I stated before this is the definition of a close fight. Could go either way.

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