Boxing phenom, Claressa Shields is set to make her MMA debut on the PFL‘s June 10th card. As of yet, it’s the only fight on the card, however, a number of eyes will be on Shields for her much-anticipated debut. Her opponent is set to be American, Brittney Elkin. The bout will be contested at lightweight.
Standing at 11-0, the ‘GWOAT’, Claressa Shields has been flawless in her professional boxing career. The two-time Olympic champion has recorded two knockout victories, going to decision nine times. She’s held multiple world titles in multiple weight classes and is the undisputed light middleweight women’s champion.
Is she completely done with boxing? Don’t expect her to hang up the gloves just yet as there is a new contender on the horizon. Savannah Marshall is the only woman to hold a victory over Claressa Shields, whom she defeated in the amateur ranks.
Marshall herself is putting forward a strong case to be the one who could defeat Shields. Most recently, she scored a savage third-round knockout over Maria Lindberg. Claressa Shields is certainly interested in the Savvanah Marshall fight, but for now, she switches her focus to MMA.
Claressa Shields vs. Brittney Elkin
Standing across from Claressa Shields on June 10th will be Brittney Elkin. At 3-6 in her professional career, Elkin hasn’t competed in MMA since 2019. She faced Kayla Harrison in Harrison’s debut back at PFL 2018 #2. Although she lost this one by armbar in the first round, facing elite competition isn’t anything new to Elkin.
Yes, Shields kicks won’t be as good as her punches, but it is her grappling game where the holes may lie. If Elkin is clever, she’ll attack the lower leg of Shields, similar to how Dustin Poirer attacked Conor McGregor’s leg in their second bout. What is interesting is that clearly, Claressa Shields has the advantage in the stand-up game but since July 2020, Elkin has had seven grappling bouts, winning four. This shows that she has a clear focus on her grappling game as of late. If she gets the fight to the ground, it could end up being a long night for Claressa Shields. Shields will hope to follow in the footsteps of Holly Holm and Heather Hardy, two former boxers who had successful MMA debuts.
Photo from PFL Twitter