Two-division titleholder Claressa Shields (9-0, 2 KO) goes for a title in a third division in her 10th pro fight on Oct. 5, when she faces Ivana Habazin for the vacant WBO junior middleweight title, moving down in weight again to 154 pounds.
The 24-year-old Shields will be returning to her hometown of Flint, Michigan, for this fight, but is training down at the famous 5th Street Gym in Miami to get ready for the bout.
Here’s what Shields had to say on Tuesday:
“I love boxing and I love that I’m one of the women who is carrying the sport, making it bigger and more well known. We’re getting more respect.
“There are fighters out there who believe that they can beat me and that really motivates me. That’s why I train and put in the time that I do.
“I want to show everybody that I’m a truly great fighter. I can beat Vasiliy Lomachenko’s record of winning titles in three divisions in 10 fights instead of 12. Plus, I’m going backwards, not going up in weight, where there are better challenges for me.
“My performances will lead to bigger fights and bigger purses for me and my opponents. I’m just going to keep building my name and building my brand.
“With this fight against Habazin, I’m definitely going in looking for the knockout. If I get it in spectacular fashion, that will go viral and help push my career forward.
“It means everything to have this fight back in my hometown. I want to be the good news for Flint and make people smile. I’m happy to be bringing a fight back home while I’m still on top. I feel like Flint will be uplifted by that.
“Everyone back home is really excited for this event. It’s going to be a huge homecoming for me on Oct. 5.
“Muhammad Ali has trained here at 5th Street Gym and every time I train here I feel like I’m in his presence. It makes me want to be even greater. He’s the GOAT and I’m going to be the GWOAT.
“Being here in Florida is great for the weight cut. I’ve been down here for nine weeks and it’s hot every day. I’m sweating and working hard and the pounds are just coming off.”