Claressa Shields is one of the biggest names in women's combat sports.
Currently the unified women's middleweight champion, Shields is also looking to make an impact in the world of MMA by joining the Professional Fighters League (PFL).
Boxing remains the focus for Shields for the time being as she prepares for an undisputed showdown with WBO middleweight champion Savannah Marshall, but PFL CEO Peter Murray is excited by Shields' return to MMA later this year in her quest to make history in the world of combat sports.
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"Why she came over was to take on the sport of MMA, she has a goal of being a two-sport champion, both boxing and MMA," Murray told DAZN when asked about why Shields decided to pursue an MMA career with PFL.
"She trusts the PFL to help develop her MMA career and we gave Claressa the flexibility to continue to box while she develops in MMA with PFL.
"Her third MMA event will be in November of this year after her big boxing bout that’s coming up this fall."
Fighters making the crossover from boxing to MMA or vice versa is nothing new. However, it has proven for some to be a difficult task, notable examples include Ben Askren and Conor McGregor who made the switch from MMA to boxing, but failed to find any success. Murray on the other hand believes Shields could have what it takes to upset this trend and make a name for herself in the PFL for her MMA ability, not just off what she's achieved in boxing.
"I think Claressa has been very clear, her aim is to be a two-sport champion, and so she’s still on her journey in boxing, taking on new opportunities," Murray said.
"But in MMA she has a goal to get into the PFL season, so we’ll see how she performs in November, we’ll see how she performs in MMA early next year.
"It’s quite possible she could be in the PFL season in 2023."