Undefeated unified 154-pound champion Claressa Shields punctuates historic all-women’s Pay-Per-View card on Fite TV with decisive victory over IBF champion Marie-Eve Dicaire – wins second undisputed title in just under two years
Flint, MICH (March 5, 2021) — Ahead of Monday, March 8, International Women’s Day, undefeated unified Junior Middleweight champion Claressa Shields and undefeated IBF champion Marie-Eve Dicaire clashed to make history at their SuperWomen event. At the top of the all-women’s Pay-Per-View, undisputed championship status awaited the main event’s winner. Salita Promotions staged the card in conjunction with Groupe Yvon Michel. Around 200 fans attended the fight live at Flint, Mich.’s Dort Federal Event Center – the bout marked Shields’ first hometown bout.
Shields (11-0, 2 KOs) represented the more versatile fighter in the match-up. Dicaire (17-1) hadn’t fought outside of Canada in five-year and three-month career. At 34-years old, without any knockouts, the question became how could she stick and move all night, and outpoint the younger champion.
The answer became apparent very early, and by the end of the fight, Dicaire had only mustered to land just over 30 total punches. Opting to stand and box or brawl with Shields was too much of a leap for the Toronto native. However, she had 20 minutes that she had to fill. Shields hit what she could hit, matched Dicaire’s physicality inside, and routed the southpaw by landing well over 100 punches. For the third fight in a row the Flint native made it difficult for a single round to be awarded to her opponent.
After 10 dominant rounds, while Dicaire never ran away and hid, Shields’ hand was raised as boxing’s only two-time undisputed champion after earning another wide unanimous decision.
The IBF champion opened the fight jabbing and feinting a lot. Shields stood flat-footed, timing the Toronto, Canada native. She landed a couple of sweeping counter left hooks that Dicaire never picked up on.
Dicaire’s bouncing carried over into the second frame. She move inside behind her jab to throw her left hand as Shields stood with both hands lowered. The two-time Olympic gold medalist picked her spots, slipped Dicaire’s punches and looked to catch the southpaw rushing inside.
Both fighters looked to exchange in Round 3. Shields thought she landed a solid shot and rushed toward Dicaire. The flare up died down as the two came chest-to-chest in the ropes. Shields landed a couple of effective right hands, but Dicaire’s confidence remained intact.
The Canadian continued to bounce and shoot a tapping jab in the fourth round. She occasionally tried to jab and get to an angle to land her left hand. Shields defended the move. By the end of the round Dicaire’s right side of her face was reddened – damage from Shields’ left hook. The round was the three-division champion’s most aggressive.
Shields patiently stalked Dicaire in the first half of Round 5. Dicaire’s constant movement helped her avoid being hit flush often, and the two almost clashed heads with Dicaire lunging forward.
Shields started landing more easily in the subsequent round. She also started showboating while walking down Dicaire. Shields’ attack focused on Dicaire’s head, and she piled up a number of scoring shots with her right hand.
Into the seventh round, Dicaire could only rush forward and mix it up with hopes of making contact. Shields continued to land the more effective punches in between busy movement. Dicaire did slow down enough to land a clean right jab to the body.
Dicaire settled down a bit through the eight round. She jabbed from outside with some success and then would step away and reset. Late in the round she rushed in a few times. Shields made her pay.
Dicaire was credited with 23 landed punches going into Round 9. Shields pressed forward looking to punish Dicaire. AT one point Dicaire rushed in and forced Shields’ upper body under and through the ropes.
The 10th and final round resembled the previous nine. Dicaire could only press forward with arms flailing. The tactic kept Shields from zeroing in on open targets, but the unified champion punished Dicaire with both hands when the two stood at mid-range.
Shields admittedly fought cautiously to protect herself from Dicaire’s wildness. She clearly landed the more effective shots, and put in another performance without losing a clear round. Officially, all three judges submitted cards with score totals of 100-90 for a unanimous decision to become undisputed champion in her second weight division.
Shields won Dicaire’s IBF title, and then also picked up the vacant WBA Super 154-pound title. After the fight she reminded the world, and women’s boxing, that Flint was the home of boxing’s baddest fighter – a two-time undisputed champion.
“I can’t be mad about my performance,” said Shields after the bout. “She just kept elbowing and head-butting me. I tried for the knockout and I almost had it a couple times, but we’ve got two minutes and the ref not breaking it up when she’s holding me and elbowing me. I’m happy but I still wanted the knockout. I just didn’t have enough time. At the end of the day, I am the new undisputed champ at 154 and the first boxer to be undisputed champ twice.
The new champion welcomed challenges with Katie Taylor at 147 pounds, as well as Savanah Marshall at 160 pounds. The 25-year old also took advantage of the opportunity to let Matchroom Boxing’s Eddie Hearn know that her price starts at half a million dollars, and more to potentially travel to England.
“Katie Taylor is not the worry. 147 pounds is. They’d have to pay me a lot to lose my butt and go down to 147. At the end of the day, I’m a woman. I don’t have big breasts, but I got a nice butt, so come with that dough and I’ll be there. At least a million and I’ll be there.
“Savannah Marshall can’t f— with me. Let’s keep it real. Savannah Marshall, you won a lucky decision when we were kids. Also London was hosting the Olympics. If you want to gloat about beating me 14 points to 8… come on now. And then I went on to become world champion in three different division and she broke. She knows she cannot and will not ever be able to f— with me. She can come to America. I will go to the UK. We can go to Mexico. We can go anywhere, and I will f— her up. She knows that. She’s scared of me. Savannah Marshall can get it. Tell Eddie Hearn, he came that wack-ass 250K. Tell him to come with 500K… 750K if he wants me to go to the UK and smoke his girl. Pay me.
Though Shields isn’t done with boxing, she stated that her MMA debut is slated for June in Las Vegas, and seemed content with where her career in the sweet science has reached a bit of a pause.
“Flint Michigan got the baddest boxer in the world!” said Shields to her fans. “We two-time undisputed. Pacquiao who? Canelo who? When someone else does what I did let me know.”
Dicaire was noted for her upbeat attitude coming into the fight. After hearing the one-sided results the former champion remained consistent when speaking on the outcome of the biggest challenge in her career.
“I think Claressa did a good job tonight,” said Dicaire. “Tonight, she was the best. Sometimes you win and sometimes you learn. Tonight, I learned. I think this is just going to allow me to grow stronger. I don’t box to protect my record or keep my record at 0 losses. I box to beat champions. Tonight, I had the chance to fight the real champion. She won this time but count on me to go back to the gym and work hard and be world champion again for sure.
The evening’s co-main event featured a Heavyweight rematch between Danielle Perkins and Monika Harrison. The two fought back in August for Perkins’ debut bout. Perkins prevailed via unanimous decision in the 4-round fight that took place at Kronk Gym.
Tonight, the results didn’t change as Perkins won all eight rounds, as Harrison (2-2-1, 1 KO) fatigue for the most of fight and barely stood in the way of the 38-year old Houston, Texas resident claiming the vacant WBC Silver championship. Perkins improved to 3-0 with one win by knockout.
All photos by Sylvia Jones/ILE. Photography