Well there are always going to be other organizations besides the UFC. They may not be able to pay well or get the best fighters but they will be there. Honestly if Shields becomes champion that's an accomplishment.
I think he will. He's elite. He had a couple of losses and got cut... he was literally on the cusp of a title shot with a win over Lombard.
Mike freakin Pyle is still in the UFC mix trying to break even the top 10 and Shields is out in the cold even though Shields choked Mike Pyle out in the first round when they fought.
Jake Shields track record is legendary.... he's defeated Robbie Lawler, Tyron Woodley, Dan Henderson, Carlos Condit, Damian Maia, Sexiyama, Paul Daley, Martin Kampmann, Mike Pyle, Yushin Okami, Sakurai, Kikuchi, Mayhem Miller and a slew of other competition that even though were not ranked were very tough fighters.... guys like Ryan Ford here. Jake deserves to be competing with the very best..... but they would rather keep guys like Diego Sanchez and Tom Lawlor...
The politics behind why they cut and keep fighters is all Dana White. The top 10 ranked fighters is ridiculous as a system the way they use it. And the UFC does not have all of the Best fighters in the world. They just really want to put on a good show.
They have sacrificed one to achieve the other.