Claressa Shields has made it known that she wants to fight Amanda Nunes in MMA and in boxing. If it happens, Shields’ promoter in Dmitriy Salita believes it would be the biggest women’s sporting event of all time.
Shields is set to fight on Jan. 10 against Ivana Habazin. If she wins, she would become a three-weight champion.
Salita believes having a three-weight champion in boxing fight a two-weight champion in MMA would be massive.
“Well, there are not a lot of people Claressa can fight in boxing and she wants to make history. She wants to be a two-sport champion. Boxing is her bread and butter. Amanda Nunes is a striker and a dominant striker in her sport. She hasn’t been grappling much and has been knocking out people with strikes. So, we see a potential fight being big like Mayweather-McGregor,” Salita told BJPENN.com of a Shields vs. Nunes fight. “It would be the biggest women’s sporting event of all time. I believe it would have a positive cultural effect. Claressa wants to make history as she is at the peak of her career. It would be as big as Rumble in the Jungle, a World Cup, the US Open tennis final, something like that. Just because of the fans, I believe it would stop the world for however many rounds it is scheduled for.”
Although Claressa Shields has said she will make her MMA debut in 2020 and train with Jon Jones, if Salita had his way, Shields vs. Nunes would be in boxing. He believes the fight is more interesting in boxing.
“Well, really boxing is what makes sense. Nunes is a striker, and a big part of the UFC is striking. There is no part of boxing that is grappling. So, Claressa has zero experience in grappling and Nunes has a ton of experience with striking,” he explained. “She is the best striker in the game. She has beaten some great strikers, she has knockout combinations. The reason why this fight is so interesting is both these champions have the ability to strike and have the power to knock folks out. Boxing makes the most sense.”
In order for this to happen, Claressa Shields must win on Jan. 10. After that, Salita plans on finalizing the details of this potential fight with Nunes, such as what weight they would fight at.
Currently, Shields is set to compete at 154 pounds but also holds belts 160 and 168 pounds so making 145 would be tough. Yet, Salita believes weight will not be a hindrance in the negotiation and even plans on inviting Amanda Nunes to Shields’ fight this week.
“Weight will not be an issue. If there is a desire from Amanda to make the fight, we will figure out the weight. The important thing is that both sides want it,” he said. “Claressa flew out to watch Amanda’s last fight and I have invited Amanda to watch Claressa’s fight on Jan. 10 with a front-row seat and show her a great time. I have no doubt we will be able to work it out.”
In the end, Salita is confident this fight will happen. The only potential holdup would be on Nunes’ end.
“For Claressa it is 100 percent. If you ask Claressa today if you want to fight Amanda Nunes in 2020, the answer is yes, where do I sign?,” Salita concluded.
Do you agree with Dmitriy Salita that Claressa Shields vs. Amanda Nunes would be the biggest women’s sporting event of all time?
This article first appeared on BJPENN.com on 1/8/2020.