Claressa Undisputed

Photo by JP Yim

Claressa Shields Now Undisputed Champion and other news


By Uppercut staff

Claressa Shields left no doubt about who is the best middleweight in the world by winning by unanimous decision victory after 10 one-sided rounds against Germany’s Christina Hammer on Saturday.

Shields (9-0, 2 KOs) remained the last one standing at the Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, New Jersey by bludgeoning Hammer (24-1, 11 KOs) and taking the WBO title to add to the WBC, WBA and IBF titles she had already gathered. It was a masterful performance.

After a slow opening round that saw both fighters in a non-aggressive stance, things changed in the second round and Shields took charge. She never let go.

The two-time Olympic gold medalist showcased her growing mastery of the professional fighting style including the art of slipping punches. Hammer seemed frustrated immediately by her inability to land her favorite weapon the jab.

Shields countered almost every Hammer attack and connected solidly with counter rights and blistering left hooks. And to add more salt to the wound Shields boasted the ability to attack with triple jabs. The German fighter was stymied.

Hammer tried her best to turn the fight around and mid-way through the fight found limited success. But for every combination she landed she was met by a Shields counter-attack. Hammer never could find her footing.

At the end of the seventh round Shields had Hammer reeling.

Shields was aware she had stunned the German fighter and charged toward Hammer in the eighth round with a sizzling four-punch combination that had the German fighter covering up. Shields attacked like a junkyard dog and Hammer seemed about ready to fall. She lost her mouthpiece and during a break in the action was allowed to gather the mouth guard. Shields was looking to end the fight but the round ended.

 “I knew I could hurt her. I thought I finished her in round eight. I thought the fight should have been stopped. She was holding onto me,” said Shields. “I was trying to get the perfect punch to get her out of there.” 

Germany’s Hammer was in survival mode as Shields continued to look for the knockout. The Michigan fighter stalked the taller opponent like a mongoose searching for an opening against a cobra, but the moment never came. Still, Shields was dominant and there was no doubt who would win the decision after 10 rounds completed.

Two judges scored it 98-91 and a third 98-92. Shields now is only the second female fighter to be recognized as undisputed world champion. Norway’s Cecilia Braekhus is undisputed welterweight world champion.

“Give me Cecilia Braekhus at 154 pounds. That’s who I want next. Either her or Savannah Marshall,” said Shields.

But for now, Shields reigns supreme in the middleweight division.

New featherweight champion

Argentina’s Brenda Carabajal (16-4-1, 9 KOs) snapped the undefeated streak of Russia’s Elena Gradinar (9-1, 2 KOs) and handed her a loss by unanimous decision to win the interim IBF featherweight world title. The main titlist is Jennifer Han who is on maternity leave.



WBO super welterweight titlist Jaime Munguia (33-0, 26 KOs) somehow won by majority decision over Ireland’s Dennis Hogan (28-2-1) in a 12 round bout filled with holding. It was an ugly fight to watch as the Irish fighter grabbed and hit while the referee never deducted a point despite repeated warnings.

Munguia also was to blame for seldom using his jab and falling into the grasps of the smaller fighter and allowing to be wrapped up by Hogan in almost every round. After 12 ugly rounds of clinching the judges scored it 114-114, and 116-112, 115-113 for Munguia. The fight took place in Monterrey, Mexico.

In a featherweight fight Diego De La Hoya (21-0) clashed heads with Enrique Bernache (24-12) and a severe laceration appeared on the foe. The fight was stopped in the second round and ruled No Contest. It’s been almost a year since De La Hoya’s last fight. Two fights have been canceled due to his inability to make weight.

Female WBO flyweight titlist Arely Mucino (28-3-2) defeated Venezuela’s Yairineth Altuve (10-3) by unanimous decision to retain the world title after 10 rounds. It was her second defense of the title she won in February 2018. She is also a former WBC, WBA and IBF world champion.


Los Angeles

WBA and WBO lightweight titlist Vasyl Lomachenko (13-1, 10 KOs) knocked out England’s Anthony Crolla (34-7-3) in the fourth round of their encounter at Staples Center in Los Angeles, Calif. A crowd of more than 10,000 saw Lomachenko retain the world titles with a one-sided performance.

Lomachenko nearly ended the fight in the third round when he caught Crolla against the ropes and fired a barrage of blows. Referee Jack Reiss stopped the fight and Lomachenko mistakenly thought the fight was over. But it was merely ruled a knockdown and Crolla survived. He was not so luck in the fourth round as Lomachenko connected with a right hook to knock out the British fighter at 58 seconds of round four.

The win was emphatic and impressive.

“I want Mikey Garcia,” said Lomachenko.

Super middleweight WBO titlist Gilberto Ramirez (40-0, 26 KOs) moved up to the light heavyweight division and proved he belonged by stopping Tommy Karpency (29-7-1) at the end of the fourth round for a win by technical knockout.

“I felt strong,” said Ramirez who fights out of Culiacan, Mexico.

A super lightweight battle saw Arnold Barboza (21-0, 8 KOs) knock out dangerous former world champion Mike Alvarado (40-5, 28 KOs) at 49 seconds of round three. The South El Monte, California fighter is now ranked in the super lightweight division.

“We want Jose Carlos Ramirez,” said Barboza, 27, of the WBC world titlist from Northern California. “We’ll fight in Northern California or here.”


Upcoming fights

Erick Ituarte (20-1-1) headlines a fight card against Jose Estrella (20-15-1) in a featherweight main event at the Doubletree Hotel in Ontario, California on Friday April 19. The Thompson Boxing Promotions card also features Richard Brewart (4-0) versus Adan Ahumada (3-7-2) in a welterweight bout. For more information or tickets call (714) 935-0900.


Southern California

A clash of welterweight contenders features Danny “Swift” Garcia (34-2) against Adrian Granados (20-6-2) in the main event at Dignity Health Sports Center in Carson, Calif. on Saturday April 20. The Premier Boxing Champions fight card will be televised by USA FOX.

Others on the lengthy card are Brandon Figueroa, Andy Ruiz, Carlos Balderas, Alfredo Angulo, and Omar Juarez.

Doors open at 3 p.m.


New York City

WBO welterweight Terence Crawford (34-0) defends against former world champion Amir Khan (33-4) at Madison Square Garden in New York City on Saturday April 20. This will be Crawford’s second defense of the world title since winning it last June against Australia’s Jeff Horn.

Also on the Top Rank card will be a slew of former and current prospects on display.

Brooklyn’s Teofimo Lopez (12-0) returns to face veteran Edis Tatli (31-2, 10 KOs) of Finland in a lightweight bout set for 10 rounds. It’s another test bout for Lopez who is being primed for a major title later this year.

Puerto Rico’s Felix Verdejo (24-1) returns to the scene of the crime where he lost his only fight by knockout. This time he faces Costa Rica’s Bryan Vazquez (37-3) a slick fighting former super featherweight title challenger not known for his power. They will meet as lightweights for this fight.

Former Olympian Shakur Stevenson (10-0) has looked extremely sharp and meets Christopher Diaz (24-1) a former world title challenger in a featherweight clash. Stevenson looks unbeatable.

The fight card will be seen on ESPN pay-per-view.