Three years removed from being cut by the UFC, Shane Nelson has found a new home with Canadian promotion Maximum Fighting Championship.

Since being released by the UFC, the 27-year-old was forced to accept any fight opportunity he could find. Nelson has been successful the past two years, going 3-1 in four fights, but hasn’t stepped inside the cage since February. But now that he has found an organization like the MFC, Nelson is excited to showcase his skills again.

“It’s a relief, but it’s not that long for me,” Nelson told The MMA Corner about finally get back in the cage. “It gives me some time to work on some things and get better. I wanted to get something on track with a reputable organization and talked to the MFC to put something together. It took awhile, but finally we got a deal done.”

For Nelson, it was an easy decision for him to sign with the MFC, considering the promotion’s success over the past decade.

Nelson (R) looks for a leg lock (Dave Mandel/Sherdog)

“They’ve been putting on shows for 10 to 12 years and have produced a lot of talent that has made it to the next level and have been successful,” stated Nelson. “I’ve just been looking for a place where I can fight consistently and didn’t have to worry about the show folding up or any of that stuff. MFC has been around for a long time and looks like they’re here to stay.”

Maximum Fighting Championship is certainly here to stay, and the organization is even continuing to grow. On Friday, Nelson will be a part of the first featherweight fight in MFC history. This is not only something new for the promotion, but also for “Sugar,” as he will compete at 145 pounds for the first time in his career.

The sport of mixed martial arts has evolved over the years, as more and more fighters are given the chance to try different weight classes. With bigger guys dropping down to lightweight, Nelson feels he’ll be much more relaxed at featherweight.

“The guys are getting bigger and bigger nowadays, cutting from 190 or 185 to go down to 155,” he explained. “On my best day I walk around at 170, so I was always a smaller guy at lightweight fighting bigger guys. Fighting on a smaller show I could get away with that, but when you fight in these bigger shows and the guys are just as skilled and have 20 pounds on you, it’s a big difference.”

Another new adjustment for Nelson is traveling from his home in Hawaii up to the Mayfield Inn Trade and Conference Centre in Canada for the first time. But Nelson says it’s just another exciting opportunity in his fighting career.

“I’ve always wanted to go over to Canada and fight,” stated the Hawaiian. “I’ve heard it’s a beautiful place over there, not looking forward to the cold weather though. It’s supposed to be snowing when I get up there, and in Hawaii it’s high 80’s, so it’s a little different.”

Nelson (Dave Mandel/Sherdog)

But at the end of the day, the only thing Nelson is concerned with is his opponent in the co-main event of MFC 35: Explosive Encounter: Graham Spencer.

The Canadian Spencer comes in with a record of 8-1 with one no-contest, and will have the home crowd advantage on Friday. Whenever an up-and-comer takes on a veteran such as Nelson, the younger fighter has a chance to propel his career by defeating a guy who has the experience of competing in the cage many times. But in this situation, the former UFC competitor Nelson isn’t going to allow Spencer to use him as a launching pad to greater things. Nelson is determined to become the first featherweight to have his hand raised inside the MFC cage.

“He looks like a tough kid, and from what I saw, he looks like he is going to come into this fight well-prepared and put on a good fight,” stated Nelson. “[But] I trained hard for this fight and I’m going to make sure that I’m not anybody’s stepping stone. He’s not going to use my name to try and catapult his career. I’m going to go out there on Oct. 26 and put an end to the hype”

“I’m not too big on predictions, but I’m going to do whatever it takes to get the job done, and at the end of the night, my hand will be raised for sure.”

Shane would like to thank his team in Hilo, BJ Penn’s MMA, BJPenn.com, KO Dynasty, Mark Pavelich and the MFC, and all his fans, especially the Hawaii fans

Photo: Shane Nelson (R) (Dave Mandel/Sherdog)

About The Author

Corey Adams
Staff Writer

Corey Adams didn't grow up watching mixed martial arts, considering the UFC was just getting started the year he was born, but in his teenage years, witnessed the action and has fallen in love with the sport. Corey was the first to join The MMA Corner staff -- other than founder Josh Davis -- and has been writing for the site ever since. Corey attends Austin Peay State University, where he majors in Communications with a focus on journalism. When he's not covering MMA, Corey is still writing on many sports with both local and campus newspapers. His favorite sports teams are the Atlanta Braves and Denver Broncos. Follow him on Twitter at the link below.