FiveKnuckles.com: The difference between that first round, which some had scored a 10-8 round and the second round, which you clearly controlled was like night and day. How did you flip that switch. What did corner tell you heading into that second round?
Jake Shields: I went back to the corner and I wasn't sure what happened. I think I said something like, "What happened? Did I slip?" And everyone in my corner was like, "Yeah, you slipped man." They didn't want to break my confidence, so I thought I slipped (laughs). So they were kinda trying to keep my confidence together, and just told me the basic stuff, like keep my hands up, and stay lower. Other than that, I was just trying to pull my head together. I knew I had lost that first round in a big way, and I was telling myself, "You gotta get it together. Pull it together right now." So I went out there and took over.
FiveKnuckles.com: How strong was Henderson in the clench?
Jake Shields: He was really strong, but luckily I was expecting that because anyone who's ever fought the guy says he's really, really strong. So I went out there expecting that. Yeah, he was really strong in that clench. He was able to move me around, and has huge power, but that's what I expected. I just stayed composed, and tried to create scrambles to get takedowns.
FiveKnuckles.com: So the fight goes as well as you could imagine aside from that first round. You've just finished beating a legend and your on cloud 9. Enter Jason "Mayhem" Miller. He gets in your face, shoves are exchanges and a brawl breaks out. What happened?
Jake Shields: Well, usually someone calls you out after the [post-fight] interview. You know, they come in in a controlled environment. He just kind of comes in right in the middle of the interview, bumps into me, gets right in my face, and I felt disrespected. That's why I went ahead and pushed him. Which, obviously I shouldn't have done, but that was my natural reaction. The guy just came right in my face and it's like, you know, I wanted him out of my face. Unfortunately that resulted in a small brawl breaking out. But, luckily no one was hurt. It's unfortunate that it happened.
FiveKnuckles.com: The incident was highly criticized within MMA circles, the greater sports world and even on national news levels, but you see brawls in baseball, basketball, and football occur on a fairly regular basis. Emotions run high in every sport, and in a competitive environment that can sometimes spill over and get physical. What are your thoughts?
Jake Shields: Well, it's easy for people to judge from the outside and say, "Oh, you guys are a bunch of thugs," but people don't understand. When you get yourself geared up to fight you're kind of in a different mindset. I mean, you're fighting someone in a cage. They're trying to hurt you. You could potentially be hurt or hurt someone, so it's not like your thinking in a regular state of mind. So people watch from the outside and judge, but they don't understand that.
I know Nick and Nate Diaz got criticized a lot for jumping in, but they're in the same mindset. We're all pumped up, the fight just happened, and they see punches getting thrown, Mayhem's throwing punches. He had people in there as well. And it's just one of those things...