01 December 2020

Claressa Shields to make MMA debut in 2021 after signing with Professional Fighters League

Undisputed world champion boxer Claressa Shields is set to make her mixed martial arts debut in 2021 after signing with the Professional Fighters League.

The 25-year-old, who won two Olympic gold medals and now holds belts in three different weight divisions as a professional, is expected to cross over for her first MMA contest on April 23, according to The Athletic.

"I wanted to test myself," Shields told ESPN. "I want to see if I can be a world champion in boxing and a world champion in MMA.

"That's something I want to test myself on. I'm not saying boxing is easy, but I've been on top of the world for almost 14 years now."

Before her MMA debut, Shields is set to box for the undisputed light-middleweight title against Marie-Eve Dicaire in January or February as she looks to replicate her feat in the 160 and 168 pound divisions by collecting all the belts at 154.

She will then turn her attention to the octagon, where she is already said to have taken some jiu-jitsu classes.

"I was telling MMA fans, I'm not just a talker," she added. "I know that's what they are used to, all these clout chasers out there. I'm like, the real deal.

"Anything I say I can do, I put my best foot forward and I do it. I haven't lost a fight since I was 17 years old, and I'm 25. I had 77 wins as an amateur, one loss. I'm 10-0 as a pro."

Shields is currently ranked the No 2 women’s boxer in The Ring magazine’s pound-for-pound list behind Katie Taylor.

The American has recently been linked with a boxing clash against Britain’s Savannah Marshall, who is the only woman to have beaten her when she won their fight in the amateurs back in 2012.

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