Two-time Olympic gold medalist Claressa Shields remained undefeated with a unanimous decision over Christina Hammer in a middleweight championship bout and one of the most anticipated fights in women's boxing history. (photos by Stephanie Trapp).
Shields (9-0) held three versions of the 160-pound title and snagged Hammer's slice of the division championship to unify the championships Saturday night at Boardwalk Hall. The charismatic Shields had a few thousand fans on their feet — and A-listers rooting her on from home — to give herself plenty of gold to strap around her waist to go with the medals around her neck.
Undefeated and undisputed, Shield won 98-91 on two cards and 98-92 on the other, and was simply dominant over 10 two-minute rounds.
Hammer's mouthpiece went flying in the eighth round when she absorbed more blows to the face that left her reeling and with about no chance for a comeback.
Shields, out of Flint, Michigan, nailed Hammer with a flurry of shots to close the eighth round and had the fans howling for "T-Rex!"
Shields won Olympic gold in 2012 at London and 2016 in Rio, and hasn't lost since 2012 as an amateur. Shields has made it a mission to revolutionize women's boxing the way Ronda Rousey became a mainstream star in mixed martial arts. There have been more accomplished female fighters — Laila Ali, Christy Martin, Lucia Rijker top the short list — but no bout has quite matched this one in anticipation or potential historic significance.