A surprising war of words between Jake Shield and Hector Lombard culminated inside the cage tonight (Sat., Mar. 15, 2014) at the UFC 171: "Hendricks vs. Lawler" pay-per-view (PPV) at the American Airlines Center in Dallas, Texas, as the two went toe-to-toe in a welterweight battle.
And while Shields may have flung a few verbal zingers leading up to the physical confrontation, it was Lombard who did all the damage inside the cage on his way to a decision victory.
Early, Lombard blasted Shields a few times and took him down twice, once on a trip and once after catching a kick. His powerful striking combined with his blistering speed befuddled the American jiu-jitsu practitioner.
Essentially, he had to survive long enough for "Lightning" to strike too many times and gas out. Then he could make it a grappling match more than fight.
Sure enough, he was hanging on for dear life in the first round. Each shot was getting stuffed and, what's more, he was taking heavy punches, some of which opened up a cut near his eye. To his credit, Shield continued trying to get in and clinch up or take Lombard down but he was finding zero success.
And every time he failed, Hector made him pay for it.
The second round looked an awful lot like the first one minute in. Shields shot in only for Lombard to sprawl out, pop back up, and go back to punching Jake in the face. On top of that, the former Bellator champion earned another takedown with a big trip.
So not only was he causing a ton of damage, he was scoring points along the way.
After a restart, the pace slowed down considerably. Lombard was no longer outright blitzing his foe, but rather sitting back, conserving his energy, and letting Shields throw pitter patter punches that were doing nothing but making him look busy.
After two, Lombard was firmly in control and Shields needed a finish if he wanted to win.
It didn't come.
In fact, Lombard worked the same game plan he used in the second frame, scoring with a few punches before sprawling out of a takedown attempt, and earning one of his own. Shields was given another opportunity after a questionable restart from the referee, but he couldn't capitalize on it. He had a guillotine locked in with 10 seconds remaining, but time ran out before he could finish the submission.
Final scores from the judges: 30-27, 30-27, and 29-28, all in favor of Lombard.
For complete UFC 171 results and blow-by-blow coverage of all the night's action click here.