The mixed martial arts and sports world watched on Saturday night when Nate Diaz defeated Conor McGregor in the main event of UFC 196, but few had a front-row seat like Jake Shields. Not only did the former UFC and now current WSOF welterweight corner Diaz, but was party to much of the pre-fight squabbling between his teammate Diaz and McGregor.
More than that, Shields has been training with Diaz before the younger brother of Nick could even fight. It’s that fuller perspective on Diaz’s up and down tenure in MMA that makes Shields so happy for his friend.
“It was great because, like you said, Nate is like a little brother to me,” Shields said on Monday’s The MMA Hour. “I’ve known him since he was at least 15. I remember he was a young, little punk kid at the gym. I’d been working out with him, so I had to take him on like a brother. Obviously everyone knows he had a lot of issues with pay, getting screwed around by Dana [White]. For him to finally step up and win such a good fight in such exciting fashion and get paid, I couldn’t be happier for him.”
In addition to simply knowing Diaz, there was also extra motivation to back his friend, Shields confessed. Sure, Diaz didn’t get this fight under the most promising of circumstances, but the world counting out the Stockton fighter’s chances was only cause to back him further.
“I believed in him regardless,” Shields said. “Obviously definitely the camp would’ve been a lot better, but I still like Nate was just the smarter fighter, the bigger fighter. I felt like he had a lot more experience.
“The camp would’ve been nice, especially since Nate was out in Cabo just a week before he got called, ….View full article
Source:: mma fighting