The hardcore fans already knew all about Shadasia Green, but on January 25, everyone else got in on the hype train when the unbeaten super middleweight contender was signed to the MVP Promotions roster and added to the Amanda Serrano-Erika Cruz undercard at Madison Square Garden’s Theater.

On Saturday. No pressure.

“It's pretty cool, but there's also a downside to it because of expectations, and I have to live up to that and be what everybody says I am and be what I think and I know that I am,” said Green, who faces former world champion Elin Cederroos. “I just want to live up to all expectations. And like I've said before, that all starts in camp. That all starts in the gym. The way I live, the way I eat, the way I study boxing, it all starts with what I've been doing consistently over the past couple of years. And I just look to continue and actually turn it up a bit more.”

The excitement around Green’s arrival on the big stage is warranted, with the New Jersey native sporting a perfect 11-0 record that includes 10 knockouts. In the ladies’ ranks, that kind of power is frightening and unheard of, and though Green believes part of it is a gift from the boxing gods, the rest is hard work and a willingness to take risks and chase the finish on fight night. 

“I don't punch myself, so I didn't know that I could carry this power the way that I have been,” she laughs. “And I don't know if it's going to carry over after facing world champions and top tier opponents.. But my ability to box will take over then, and I really can do both. I'm learning more how to set my power up, but I definitely think it's a mixture of both. I'm willing to take more risks in the fights because of the risks that I take in sparring. And I'm not sparring some small guys with an amateur background; I’m sparring pros. And like I said, the preparation starts in training. Your training and your sparring is always supposed to be harder than the fight. So when I get in there in front of a female and she hits me with her best shot,  let's not be mistaken, I have great defense, so I'm not getting hit flush because of all the tools that I have as far as defense is concerned. But if I’ve got to take risks and get caught, my chin is okay and I'm like, okay, cool.”

And while the 33-year-old hasn’t been forced to take some thunder and shake it off in the pro ranks, as an amateur, she fought unbeaten heavyweight contender Danielle Perkins twice and sparred with the nation’s best, from Claressa Shields and Mikaela Mayer to Franchon Crews-Dezurn and Christina Cruz. If that doesn’t get a fighter ready for the next level, nothing will, and at this point, the only question mark about Green is her age. But she’s got a good excuse for only arriving to the world stage now, and it’s fair to say it’s her mom Rechelle’s fault.

In a good way. 

See, back when Green was a teenager, she discovered and fell in love with the sweet science. But this was a love triangle, and on the other side was basketball. And as good as Green is at boxing now, she was just as good on the hardwood, which meant colleges started calling.

“I wanted to go to the Olympics (in boxing),” said Green. “I wanted to stay home and train in boxing. I didn't want to go to school. And my mother, she called the coach, and the coach closed the gym, made me go home and there were a number of letters of intent with full scholarship offers.” 

Green wasn’t impressed.

“Mom, I don't want to do college. The Olympics is right here, they're letting girls in. Let me do this, please.” 

“No. But I’ll make a deal with you. Go to school, apply yourself fully to receive your bachelor's degree, and excel and meet new people and travel the world and play basketball. And when you finish and boxing is still what you want to do, you can bring me that degree home and I'll give you your life back.” 

“Mom, do you promise?” 

“Yes, I promise.” 

Green kept her end of the deal, starring at Old Dominion University and getting her degree.

Mom kept her end of the deal, as well, giving her daughter her life back. Now, if boxing doesn’t work out, Green has a backup plan. But if it keeps going the way it has been, Rechelle is still Shadasia’s biggest fan.

“She's excited, man,” said Green of her mom. “She calls me when she's going to work. And she sees I'm in the gym. Then she calls me when she's leaving work and she says, ‘You still in the gym?’ (Laughs) So she told me when it happened, ‘This was well deserved. I'm proud of you. It's your time. Go make it happen for you.’” 

And if you were wondering what kind of mom Rechelle is, the loudest one in the building or the one who covers her eyes until the final bell sounds…

“She's the loudest one,” Green laughs. “And it's funny because with basketball, she did her research. She knew what type of different defenses we needed to play. She started waking me up at five o'clock in the morning before school, making me go and shoot 300 jump shots because the schools that I was playing against, they said, ‘Oh, she can't shoot from the outside.’ So she would read the comments in the paper that the other coaches would make and she said, ‘Listen, we need to go to the court and shoot from the outside.’ I'm like, ‘Mom, I got school.’ (Laughs) So now it's crazy because now she's learning. My grandfather was a professional fighter, he even trained with Marvin Hagler, but it's crazy that she's learning these things. And you can hear it loud in the last fight: ‘Use the jab!’ I'm just like, I switched sports and she still mastered it. I can't get away from it. I can't get away from her coaching.”

Green laughs, loving every minute of this journey that she isn’t just taking by herself, but with her mom. And now, even Jake Paul of MVP Promotions is on board, which means a lot more eyes on her, a lot more media obligations, and basically, a lot more of everything. And that’s a lot for a soft-spoken young lady about to be thrown into a world she may not have prepared herself for. 

Or has she?

“I'm prepared for it,” Green said. “I prepared myself a long time ago. I think that God has also pushed my time back for me to wait and be patient for when he knew that I was ready for it. My life is moving in the area where it's all about boxing. It's all about putting myself in positive situations and handling myself correctly. So I'd say as far as media presence and opponents and everybody having an opinion, I think that I'm prepared for that.”