Jake Shields has not finished a fight in nearly five years.
Granted, he's fought some pretty stiff competition during that span as a champion in Strikeforce and contender in UFC. But it's not getting any easier when he gets back into action at the upcoming UFC 171 pay-per-view (PPV) event, which takes place on March 15, 2014, in Dallas, Texas.
That's because he's fighting Hector Lombard.
And assuming "Lightning" doesn't lay an egg in "The Lone Star State," Shields is going to have his hands full with the Olympian. Which is why submitting the hard-hitting judo player would be a major statement in a crowded 170-pound division.
But enough to warrant a title shot? Shields breaks it down to MMA Junkie Radio:
"I’ve gotta be close. I’m on a good win streak right now, and I want to go out there put Hector away and hopefully finish, which isn’t an easy task. I would be the first guy to do it and get a title shot. I want to take him down, go for a submission, (and work) heavy ground and pound. I think if I can finish him, I can probably get a title shot. So I need to go out there and push as hard as I possibly can."
Lombard (33-4) has never been finished in his professional career.
To Shields' credit, he's only been polished off twice in the last 14 years, so it's not like he's easily broken. But he won't have the size advantage in the American Airlines Center, as Lombard is also a former middleweight and one of the hardest punchers in the sport.
Title shot or no title shot, finishing "Shango" would be something to talk about.