Claressa Shields beats Ivana Habazin, wins junior middleweight title

By Mark Elezaj

ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. – History was made Friday night at the Ocean Casino Resort. Claressa Shields (10-0, 2 KOs), a two-time Olympic gold medalist, won the vacant WBC and WBO titles in her first fight in the 154-pound division. Shields also became the fastest fighter in the history of boxing to win world titles in three weight classes, beating out Vasiliy Lomachenko and Kosei Tanaka, who both each became three-weight world champions in their 12th fights back in 2018.

From the opening bell, Shields out classed Ivana Habazin for 10 rounds, winning a unanimous decision in their title fight.

Shields boxed and moved, landing her jab with ease. She pushed the action, landing combinations and power shots whenever Habazin got close.

Shields continued to dominate as the fight moved on, and in the sixth round she landed a nicely placed left hook to the body that knocked Habazin down for the first time in her career. This was also the first time Shields knocked an opponent down as a pro.

Shields made it a point to attack the body. According to CompuBox, nearly half of her punches (68 of 141) were to the body.

Shields connected on 141-of-516 punches while Habazin landed just 49 out of 285 thrown.

Shields, who is still the undisputed middleweight champion, intends to move back up to 160 pounds to defend her IBF, WBA, WBC and WBO titles next.

“We spent so many months in camp for this fight,” Shields told Showtime’s Jim Gray in her post-fight interview. “It wasn’t what I wanted, but I’m happy with the improvement. This feels great, I did it in 10 fights. Now I’m number one, the fastest boxer in history to become a three-division world champion.”

“I just want to become a better fighter. That’s all. I want to grow women’s boxing,” Shields said.

When asked who was next,

“I’d love to face Elin Cederroos. I’d love to fight her,” said Shields,

“None of these girls are ready for me.”

“I want to share a card with Deontay Wilder and Errol Spence.

Andre Ward (seated at ringside) said, ‘Sis, take her to the body.’ I was throwing all body shots in the first minute and then boom, she went down.”

When asked if the bad blood with Habazin was over, Shields said “She can take a piece of humble pie and go back to Croatia”.

Shields performance showed that she is an elite talent, and why she calls herself the “GWOAT”.

~ The Fighting Voice ~

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