Claressa Shields is considered one of the best female boxer of her era, but she is turning to MMA in 2021.
All through 2019, Shields hinted at a move to MMA and made it clear she wished to combat Amanda Nunes. However, when she officially signed with an MMA promotion it was with the PFL and never the UFC. Based on Shields, the reason why she picked PFL was due to her speaking to Dana White.
Claressa Shields says she believes she and Amanda Nunes will fight to prove who the best is. Here is a bit from the scrum she's doing with media right now. pic.twitter.com/uX1ozAjaRb
— Heidi Fang (@HeidiFang) December 15, 2019
“It was just the conversation. It wasn’t like ‘hey come and train a few months and then fight against the best girl we have at your weight,’” Shields explained when speaking to MMA Fighting. “I feel like that’s unfair to me. It’s not giving me enough time to learn. If you’re talking about letting me train for two years and then fight against the best girl you have, all right cool.
As Claressa Shields mentions, she is still allowed to continue with her boxing career under the PFL contract, which is a giant bonus to her.
“The conversation with Dana [White] was almost like a one-fight deal kind of a little bit. With the PFL it was more like ‘let’s train, let’s start you off at this level and as you work your way up, the competition will get harder’ and then I would have a chance to fight in the PFL season in 2022. Also, too, I would be able to box also, too. So my boxing career isn’t just over because I’m doing MMA. I actually have a boxing match in February. It just hasn’t been announced yet. I still get to box and I’m not being rushed.”
As Claressa Shields mentions, she is still allowed to continue her boxing career under the PFL contract, which is a big bonus to her.
When will Claressa Shields make her MMA debut?
At the moment, there isn’t a date for when Shields will make her MMA debut. Though she is not a part of the PFL event, she can have non-tournament bouts on sure cards. The earliest she would combat is sometime within the spring when PFL kicks off their 2021 season.
— PFL MMA (@ProFightLeague) December 9, 2020
Shields is also training at JacksonWink MMA and coaching with the likes of Jon Jones, Holly Holm, and Michelle Waterson.
Athletic, learns fast and has a crazy work ethic, Clarissa could be a problem 🔥 pic.twitter.com/WABMPTkFlk
— BONY (@JonnyBones) December 6, 2020
Although she will not fight in MMA till early to mid-2021, she does have a boxing match in February that hasn’t been announced. In the fight, she will look to go 11-0 as a pro. With her final win, she turned the fastest ever to win titles in three divisions, male or female, in history.