The face of women's boxing in the United States is getting a quick start to 2020, as middleweight champion Claressa Shields moves down to 154 pounds to take on Ivana Habazin for the vacant WBC and WBO junior middleweight titles Friday at the Ocean Casino Resort in Atlantic City.
Shields and Habazin had been set to square off on two occasions. They were set to fight in August, but the match-up was postponed when Shields injured her knee while in training camp. The bout was rescheduled for October in Shields' hometown of Flint, Mich., but it failed to come to fruition after an incident involving Shields' brother and Habazin's lead trainer, James Ali Bashir, that left Bashir unconscious at the weigh-in. Shaken up by the situation, Habazin refused to fight, and the fight was postponed again and moved to Friday.
For Shields (9-0, 2 KOs), a two-time Olympic gold medalist, a victory would make her the fastest fighter in boxing history to win world titles in three different weight classes. As of late, Shields has discussed going into MMA and having a fight with current two-division UFC champion Amanda Nunes and setting up her training with light heavyweight champion Jon Jones.
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Habazin (20-3, 7 KOs), a former IBF welterweight champion, fights in the United States for the first time in her career. During the build-up, Habazin has said that she's dedicating the Shields fight to Bashir.
Can Habazin derail the hype surrounding Shields and the plans she has in store? Or does Shields continue her dominance?
Here's all you need to know about Shields and Habazin, including the start time, price to watch, and the undercard for the bout.
What time is Claressa Shields vs. Ivana Habazin?
- Date: Friday, Jan. 10
- Time: 9 p.m. ET (main card)
- Main event: 10:30 p.m. ET (approximate)
The main card starts at 9 p.m. ET, which is when the Showtime programming gets underway. Shields and Habazin are expected to make their ring walks about 10:30 p.m. ET, although the exact time depends on the length of the earlier bouts.
How to watch Shields vs. Habazin
Shields vs. Habazin is available on Showtime (subscription required) and can be streamed on Sho.com.
How much does Shields vs. Habazin cost?
The Claressa Shields vs. Ivana Habazin fight is not on pay-per-view and is available only on Showtime.
Where is the Shields vs. Habazin fight?
Shields will fight Habazin at Ocean Casino Resort in Atlantic City, N.J. It will mark Shields' first fight at the venue but the second time she's competed in Atlantic City. Her last time out, she defeated Christina Hammer by unanimous decision in April. Habazin also competes at the arena for the first time.
Claressa Shields vs. Ivana Habazin odds
Online sportsbook Bovada lists Claressa Shields as a massive favorite, coming in at -10,000, which means you'll need to bet $10,000 to win $100. Meanwhile, Habazin is a +1600 underdog, meaning if you bet $100, you could win $1,600.
Claressa Shields record and bio
- Name: Claressa Shields
- Nationality: American
- Born: March 17, 1995
- Height: 5-8
- Reach: 68"
- Total fights: 9
- Record: 9-0 with two knockouts.
Ivana Habazin record and bio
- Name: Ivana Habazin
- Nationality: Croatian
- Born: Oct. 22, 1989
- Height: 5-9
- Reach: N/A
- Total fights: 23
- Record: 20-3 with seven knockouts.
Claressa Shields vs. Ivana Habazin card
|Claressa Shields vs. Ivana Habazin||Women's Jr. Middleweight||WBC/WBO (Vacant)|
|Jaron Ennis vs. Bakhtiyar Eyubov||Welterweight|
|Alicia Napoleon-Espinosa vs. Elin Cederroos||Women's Super Middleweight||IBF/WBA|
|Alexey Zubov vs. Eric Abraham||Cruiserweight|
|Apti Davtaev vs. Keith Barr||Heavyweight|
|Jacob Bonas vs. Christian Rivera||Welterweight|
|Joseph Bonas vs. Glenn Mitchell||Welterweight|