Rey Sefo’s World Series of Fighting is an organization that continues to fly under the radar. While they don’t have the depth to compete with organizations like Bellator and the UFC head-to-head on a consistent basis, they know when to take their shots. On Saturday, August 1, 2015, the World Series of Fighting will go head-to-head with UFC 190 with WSOF 22: Palhares vs. Shields. While the UFC’s main attraction will be featured on pay-per-view fans can tune in to see two of the best welterweights in the world battle it out for the WSOF title live on NBCSN.

Rousimar Palhares has run through both of his WSOF opponents; winning both bouts by first round submission. A leg lock specialist Palhares is looking to defend his title for the second time while adding a limb of Jake Shields to his trophy wall.

That is easier said than done though as Shields is one of the most well-rounded grapplers in the sport today. Shields has combined a great wrestling pedigree with a BJJ black belt to become a methodical grinder who breaks the will of his opponents. Shields has won both of his WSOF bouts by first round submission and he is looking to take the title from Palhares on Saturday night.

Striking

Neither fighter is going to “WOW” you on the feet but Shields does have the superior technical ability. Shields utilizes a solid jab and because of his wrestling acumen he can control fighters in the clinch while landing dirty boxing. Palhares is a powerful fighter but he doesn’t have the tools to out strike Shields. If this fight stays on the feet – which is doubtful – Shields will pick Palhares apart.

Advantage: Shields

Grappling

This is where both fighters shine; Palhares and Shields are both known for their grappling ability. Palhares is known for his aggressive submission attempts while Shields is known for his ability to grind opponents out. Just looking purely at his ability to control position and advance Shields is as good as it gets. Shields is a master at methodically breaking down an opponent’s defenses. If Shields is allowed to dictate position in this fight, Palhares will be in a world of trouble.

Advantage: Shields

Submissions

While both men are tremendous grapplers, when it comes to the execution of effective submission technique, Palhares has the clear advantage. Palhares attacks with submissions unlike any other fighter in MMA and when he locks one in he is looking to take that body part home with him. Palhares is known primarily for his leg locks, but make no mistake, he has a fully array of submission weapons in his arsenal.

X-Factors

Heading in to WSOF 22, Palhares’ X-Factor is simple; be first. Palhares cannot allow Shields to dictate the pace and position of this fight. The long this fight goes the better of Shields will be because as he sweats it will become increasingly difficult for Palhares to lock in his favorite submission. Palhares needs to attack early and catch Shields off guard while his skin is dry.

For Shields, his biggest X Factor is his experience. Over the course of his career, Shields has faced much tough competition and he has done extremely well. Palhares doesn’t bring anything to the cage that Shields hasn’t faced before.

Prediction: Shields wins via unanimous decision

About The Author

RJ Gardner
Content Coordinator

RJ Gardner is a rabid sports fan and a long time MMA enthusiast. After watching UFC 1 at ripe old age of 11 RJ was hooked and his passion for the sport has continued to blossom over the years. RJ has been covering MMA since 2007 and has had work featured on Bleacher Report, SI.com, CBSSports.com and UFC.com. RJ is also a Petroleum Transportation Operations Manager during the day.