Jake Shields’ UFC Debut Near Finalized Josh Davis May 23, 2011 News With the contracting signing of Jake Shields pretty much complete except for some minor details, sources close to the UFC have indicated that his first opponent will be against welterweight contender Martin Kampmann. A few weeks ago Shields had indicated that he wanted to start off in the UFC competing at Middleweight and eventually fighting Anderson Silva. Dana White had stated that though he was not going to tell Shields what division to compete in, he did feel that Shields would be best served in the Welterweight division. After a couple of weeks of though,t Shields recently stated that he would compete at Welterweight and was hopeful that he could fight Georges St. Pierre. Obviously this can not happen immediately because of St. Pierre’s contracted obligation to the Ultimate Fighter TV show and the signed bout agreement with Josh Koscheck. Even if St. Pierre was not signed to fight Koscheck, I do not believe that Shields should get an immediate title shot. I believe that Shields should get at least one quality win, if not two, in the UFC before he challenges for St. Pierre’s belt. While there is no denying Shields’ talent and skill level, many fighters have struggled transitioning from other organizations into the UFC. The UFC is the top promotion and some fighters struggle with the change. Now by no means am I saying that Shields will struggle with his transition to the UFC, Shields has a wealth of experience and he has fought some of the best that this sport has to offer. Despite his experience, Shields should have to prove himself at least one time in the UFC Octagon before he is awarded a title shot. While I do believe that Shields is a great fighter I think he will struggle with the competition that he will find in the UFC. Even though Shields already has some big wins over UFC fighters, they were earned in a different and a different place. I think that the UFC is handling the situation perfectly by giving him a very game and tough opponent in Martin Kampmann. Kampmann is a very well rounded fighter that has excellent striking and a very underrated ground game and I think he will be able to push Shields. I believe that this is a fight that Shields should win, but you can never look past a fighter of Kampmann’s skill.