Submission Radio spoke with Jake Shields post-fight after his controversial fight with Rousimar Palhares at WSOF 22.

Shields who had to deal with alleged eye gouging from Palhares explained his frustrations “Man I was just really pissed. The guy [Palhares] just gouged my eyes over and over, you know? I haven’t watched the fight yet, I’m not sure if it’s evident on TV, but this guy kept catching his thumb and digging it in my eyes and it’s 100 percent, absolutely deliberate. I’ve never in 40 fights and maybe 100 submission matches been gouged once. This guy did it over and over at least eight times. I kept telling Mazzagatti who was completely ignoring it and he just allowed this guy to blatantly cheat. And then on top of that, you know, he cranked the submission after I tapped. So it was just…..it was just really irritating.” Jake was able to confirm to Submission Radio if the eye gouging had a significant impact on his performance at WSOF 22 “Yeah, I mean that’s why I was more mad about that than the late submission because I thought it affected my fight. It’s hard to say for sure. I hate being the guy making excuses, it’s not the way I am, but I mean I was winning the fight, and I go in the third round not being able to see good, and I just felt like I also let it get to me mentally, the fact that – I mean that’s my fault for letting it get to me mentally – but the fact that the ref was completely ignoring it. I’d tell him over and over and he did not care.”


One of the big discussion points of the fight was referee Steve Mazzagatti’s choice not to deduct a point from Rousimar during the fight for repeated eye gouging. When asked if he thought a point should have been taken Jake responded “Man I was absolutely astonished that he didn’t take a point. Honestly, I’ve never really taken an interest in Steve Mazzagatti. I know he has a terrible reputation as a ref but I’ve never like really paid attention to be honest. I didn’t know if it was deserved or not. But after today, I think the guy’s a joke and I’ll refuse to have him ref me again, especially ’cause I had some words with him at the end. There’s no way I’ll let the guy ref me. If you blatantly let a guy – a guy who’s known as a cheater – I mean I’ve never seen him gouge eyes before but he blatantly let a guy just put his thumbs in my eyes over and over. It wasn’t the kind if eye-gouge that you see when guys are throwing punches, he was taking hands and trying gouge me eyes out.”

 
Although it seems like a rematch is likely Jake was adamant that he’d like to take the fight to Palhares in the streets instead “Yeah man, I want to fight the guy in the streets to be honest, ’cause I want to gouge his eyes back, I want to bite him, I want to kick him in the balls. I like actually wanna fight the guy.  If I see him tonight I’m coming after him. Like I don’t like the guy. They’ve got rules and he’s not following the rules. I don’t know. I mean I’ll fight him again in a cage, but maybe I’ll stoop to his level if I have a shitty ref.”

 

For now the question remains, what should WSOF do with Rousimar Palhares after another questionable fight? According to Jake, suspension is the way to go “Yeah, you know, I think it was blatant. I think he should probably be suspended. Especially with his track record. I mean it’s not my place to say, that’s between the athletic commission and them. I don’t know, but I know if I was in charge I’d definitely suspend him.”

Full interview: http://youtu.be/Zu6x8uQy0VE

Transcript 

What was going through Jake’s mind after the submission when he stood up

“Man I was just really pissed. The guy [Palhares] just gouged my eyes over and over, you know? I haven’t watched the fight yet, I’m not sure if it’s evident on TV, but this guy kept catching his thumb and digging it in my eyes and it’s 100 percent, absolutely deliberate. I’ve never in 40 fights and maybe 100 submission matches been gouged once. This guy did it over and over at least eight times. I kept telling Mazzagatti who was completely ignoring it and he just allowed this guy to blatantly cheat. And then on top of that, you know, he cranked the submission after I tapped. So it was just…..it was just really irritating.”

On how badly the eye gouges affected Jake’s performance

“Yeah, I mean that’s why I was more mad about that than the late submission because I thought it affected my fight. It’s hard to say for sure. I hate being the guy making excuses, it’s not the way I am, but I mean I was winning the fight, and I go in the third round not being able to see good, and I just felt like I also let it get to me mentally, the fact that – I mean that’s my fault for letting it get to me mentally – but the fact that the ref was completely ignoring it. I’d tell him over and over and he did not care.”

On if he’s surprised that Mazzagatti didn’t take a point for the eye gouges, and his thoughts on his refereeing as a whole

“Man I was absolutely astonished that he didn’t take a point. Honestly, I’ve never really taken an interest in Steve Mazzagatti. I know he has a terrible reputation as a ref but I’ve never like really paid attention to be honest. I didn’t know if it was deserved or not. But after today, I think the guy’s a joke and I’ll refuse to have him ref me again, especially ’cause I had some words with him at the end. There’s no way I’ll let the guy ref me. If you blatantly let a guy – a guy who’s known as a cheater – I mean I’ve never seen him gouge eyes before but he blatantly let a guy just put his thumbs in my eyes over and over. It wasn’t the kind if eye-gouge that you see when guys are throwing punches, he was taking hands and trying gouge me eyes out.”

On Jake’s shoulder after Rousimar’s kimura

“Yeah I mean it’s really sore and It’s hard to say. It’s hard to tell with a shoulder – a shoulder and elbow – like how serious it is. I’m thinking I’ll be ok, but hopefully I’ll know in the next couple of days.”

“I’m a lot more irritated about the eye pokes but it’s still ridiculous that he clearly held a submission too long after I tapped.”

On if he spoke to Ray Sefo or Ali Abdel-Aziz about the situation

“Yeah they say they blatantly saw the eye pokes as well. I mean they didn’t say what they were going to do, but they definitely were not happy. They were aware that he was cheating and they seemed very not happy. I mean I don’t blame them, they’re in a tricky situation. It’s their champ, you know, like what do you do? Do you strip him or not? I mean I don’t know. Personally, I probably would, but that’s…..you know, I respect both of them. That’s a decision they’re going to have to make.”

On if Rousimar should be punished

“Yeah, you know, I think it was blatant. I think he should probably be suspended. Especially with his track record. I mean it’s not my place to say, that’s between the athletic commission and them. I don’t know, but I know if I was in charge I’d definitely suspend him.”

On if Jake Shields wants an immediate rematch

“Yeah man, I want to fight the guy in the streets to be honest, ’cause I want to gouge his eyes back, I want to bite him, I want to kick him in the balls. I like actually wanna fight the guy.  If I see him tonight I’m coming after him. Like I don’t like the guy. They’ve got rules and he’s not following the rules. I don’t know. I mean I’ll fight him again in a cage, but maybe I’ll stoop to his level if I have a shitty ref.”


Best regards, 

Denis Shkuratov

Head Producer

Submission Radio Australia
SB Nation
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