Jake Shields out of WSOF 30 due to contract dispute, Jon Fitch will now meet Joao Zeferino

WSOF President Ray Sefo previously announced that the promotion was planning to have Jake Shields and Jon Fitch fight for the vacant welterweight title at WSOF 30 in April. However, this fight is no longer taking place as the promotion is having a contract dispute with Shields.

With the current contract dispute with Shields, Sefo revealed on the WSOF website that Fitch will now meet Joao Zeferino at WSOF 30 for the vacant welterweight title.

For the past few months, I have really been looking forward to seeing two of MMA’s best welterweights, Jon Fitch and Jake Shields, meet in the decagon for our vacant 170-pound title. Now, I can’t tell you how disappointed I am to have to tell World Series of Fighting fans this fight will not happen when we had hoped.

While I thought everyone was on board to make this fight happen, unfortunately Jake Shields has informed us that he does not intend to honor the terms of his existing contract at this time and declined to sign a bout agreement to fight Jon Fitch, so we’ve had to go in a different direction.

Fortunately, we found someone on our roster who was willing to step up for this incredible opportunity not only to potentially win a title, but also to face one of MMA’s all-time greats in Jon Fitch. That man is Joao Zeferino.

Zeferino (20-7) was a finalist during the WSOF one night, eight-man lightweight tournament and will be moving up to the welterweight division to fight Fitch for the vacant title. Prior to losing to Brian Foster in the tournament final, Zeferino had won seven in a row and all of those wins came by stoppage in the opening round.

WSOF 30 is slated to take place on April 2nd at a venue to be determined and along with the vacant welterweight title fight, the event is also targeted to see David Branch defend the middleweight title against Clifford Starks.