Claressa Shields continues to show her dominance, even properly exterior of her consolation zone.
Already one of many best feminine boxers of all time, Shields loved a formidable combined martial arts (MMA) debut, scoring a third spherical stoppage of Brittney Elkin. The three-division and reigning lineal junior middleweight and middleweight champion pounded away on a defenseless Elkin till forcing the stoppage of 1:44 of spherical three of their ESPN2-televised principal occasion Thursday night at Ocean On line casino Resort in Atlantic Metropolis, New Jersey.
Shields spent greater than a 12 months mentally making ready for her debut in MMA, together with a strong seven months’ price of coaching in several types of fight sports activities. Her supreme boxing abilities had been in the end her handiest weapon all through the grueling three spherical affair, whereas Elkin managed the motion on the bottom particularly within the opening spherical.
The bout began off well-intended for Shields, a two-time Olympic Gold medalist and three-division world champion within the professional ranks as a boxer. Elkin was in a position to fend off the incoming, taking down Shields and preserving her pinned to the canvas for a lot of the five-minute spherical. Shields remained composed, not permitting Elkin to trigger any extra injury.
The tide turned in spherical two, as Shields actually got here out swinging. A mix from the unbeaten boxing pound-for-pound queen appeared to daze Elkin, although in the end letting the Bethlehem, Pennsylvania jiu-jitsu specialist (holding a brown belt in that area) off the hook. Elkin as soon as once more managed a takedown of Shields, although not having fun with the identical stage of dominance as within the previous spherical. Shields confirmed her floor and pound abilities as a way to struggle her method out of bother and ending the spherical on a excessive notice.
Elkin was in bother for the primary time within the struggle early in spherical three. Shields arrange the assault with clear punching, sending Elkin to the mat after which pounding away on her head. Elkin remained on the bottom as Shields used her decrease physique power to place her opponent for the struggle ending sequence. Defend continued to strike, repeatedly catching her opponent clear with a number of proper arms as mirrored in ultimate struggle stats the place the unbeaten 26-year-old landed 90-of-96 complete strikes.
Shields was 39-of-41 in arm strikes and an much more spectacular 49-of-52 on the bottom, a big chunk of it coming within the truncated spherical three in forcing a mercy stoppage.
Shields is now 12-0 general as a professional in fight sports activities, 11-0 in her chosen area of boxing and 1-0 (1KO) contained in the cage. Elkin’s MMA document falls to 3-7.
Jake Donovan is a senior author for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox