Pick It: Ring #1 Claressa Shields vs. #2 Marie Dicaire (Friday, PPV/Fite, 9 PM EST)
The top two Jr. middleweights in the world throw down in this all-women’s pay-per-view outing. 25-year old lineal world middleweight queen Claressa Shields (10-0, 2 KO) attempts to be the first boxer to unify the four major titles in two different weight classes.
To do it at Jr. Middleweight, she will have to defeat 34-year old Marie Dicaire (17-0, 0 KO) over the scheduled ten rounds. Also on the card, Shields Olympic teammate, 31-year old flyweight Marlen Esparza (8-1, 1 KO) tries to make it two straight after suffering an early end by cut in a lopsided loss to flyweight titlist Seneisa Estrada in 2019.
Additional Shows to Watch For
Friday - Yoka vs. Djeko (ESPN+, 2:50 PM EST)
28-year old heavyweight Tony Yoka (9-0, 7 KO) did just about everything one can as an amatuer, winning Gold at the 2015 World’s and, with some controversy, Gold at the 2016 Olympics over Joe Joyce. Already rated in the top ten by the IBF, Yoka is being moved well in the paid ranks. Opponent Joel Djeko (17-2-1, 8 KO) has won eight in a row and never been stopped.
Friday - Geffrard vs. Grachev (Impact, 10:30 PM EST)
38-year old light heavyweight Denis Grachev (20-11-1, 11 KO) flirted with the top of the class almost a decade ago when he handed former lineal king Zsolt Erdei his first loss. It didn’t last long and he enters here with losses in four of his last five though both of his stoppage defeats came in 2013 and 2014. 30-year old Steve Geffrard (17-2, 12 KO) has done nothing but win since starting his career with two defeats.
Friday/Saturday - Alamo vs. Beltran (Telemundo, 12 AM EST)
25-year old Jr. welterweight Yomar Alamo (18-0-1, 12 KO) is rated in the top ten by the WBO at an interesting time. With unification coming in May, he’s a division where there could be a four-belt aspiration if he can get to a mandatory. For now, he’ll have to handle his business with 32-year old Jesus Beltran (17-3-2, 10 KO). Beltran is coming off two straight losses but has never been stopped.
Cliff Rold is the Managing Editor of BoxingScene, a founding member of the Transnational Boxing Rankings Board, a member of the International Boxing Research Organization, and a member of the Boxing Writers Association of America. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org