Claressa Shields vs. Ivana Habazin final weighs, quotes, photos and commission officials for unified 154 pound world championship on Friday. LIVE on Showtime from the Ocean Casino Resort.
(Photo credits: Stephanie Trapp/SHOWTIME)
SHOWTIME BOXING: SPECIAL EDITION® – 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT on SHOWTIME
Unified 154-Pound World Championship
Claressa Shields – 153 ½ lbs.
Ivana Habazin – 152 ½ lbs.
Referee: Sparkle Lee; Judges: Debra Barnes (New Jersey), Lynne Carter (Pennsylvania), Robin Taylor (New York)
10-Rd Welterweight Bout
Jaron Ennis – 145 ¾ lbs.
Bakhtiyar Eyubov – 146 ¼ lbs.
Referee: Earl Brown; Judges: Jackie Atkins (New Jersey), Albert Bennett (New Jersey); James Kinney (New Jersey)
WBA and IBF Super Middleweight World Championship Unification
Alicia Napoleon Espinosa – 164 lbs.
Elin Cederroos – 166 ½ lbs.
Referee: Benjy Esteves; Judges: Mark Consentino (New Jersey), Lawrence Layton (New Jersey), John McKaie (New York)
“It wasn’t difficult [to make weight]. In Flint I was 154.0. Now I’m 153.4. I could go down to 147 if I wanted to. I don’t fight off emotion. That’s why I’m a champion. There are plenty of girls who have done way worse things than what she’s doing trying to throw me off my square. I don’t really think what she’s doing, or her new coach, is supposed to bother me.
I’m hated because I’m a female boxer that talks trash in a male dominated sport. That’s what that’s about. When you have people that want women to be quiet, and go in the kitchen and cook. I get that all the time. People like Ken, who say that women will never make close to a million dollars in boxing. Now he gets a little agitated because I’m close to making a million dollars in boxing.
“He gets upset with my success instead of saying, ‘Good job, your doing great things for the sport of boxing.’ Him and others try to nitpick. “Oh, she talks too much trash’ or ‘She needs to be like this because she’s a woman fighter. She’s ghetto, and she’s unclassy.’
Claressa says Habazin is in a lot of trouble
“It’s like, how am I unclassy, and Deontay Wilder isn’t unclassy when he says he wants to catch a body. I don’t want to kill anyone. I just want to whoop a girl’s a–. But I’m unclassy for saying that. So things like that is where the hate comes from. I’m not misunderstood because I say what I mean.
“We all say things we shouldn’t say, but the truth will never get old, and the truth will never go out of style. Being honest is something that people should take a lesson in, and stop trying to be perfect for everybody, because I’m not going to do that in women’s boxing or in anything else that I do.
“I came here with a sound mind. Just trying to stay calm and cool. I know I’m going to have to deal with the media asking questions about the Flint incident. People trying to bash me about that still. Just trying to get ready for the fight, and tune everything out, and just focus on my diet, my water intake, and my working out.
“I need to make sure that I stay strong and stay fit leading up to the fight. And really working out with my coach. We continue to work on what we’ve been working on since October, and now we’re here in January.
“We’ve had five or six months to work on one opponent, so she’s in a lot of trouble. They do that because I’m a black African American female, who is on top of my game.
Shields not afraid to speak her mind
“The thing that I don’t get what is, Tony Harrison and Jermell Charlo disrespected each other completely. There was no respect between those guys even on a professional level. They were going to fight each other. I love both of those guys, but why can’t I do that? For one, I’m not going to go that far, because that ain’t what I do.
“I’m going to talk my trash, but I get in there and back up every single word that I say. I’ve accomplished more than both of those guys have put together. So why should they say me talking about being a woman about what I can and can’t do? But anyone else can talk about my skills.
“They didn’t come to the gym, and starve with me, but I’m supposed to be respectful, but you guys can brag. But when I speak about myself and speak facts, it’s a problem. It’s all about because I’m a black woman. That’s it, but if I was Ronda Rousey. She’s talking more s— than a little bit.
People love to see fighters trash talk – Shields
“No one ever said a f—- word about it, did they? I wonder why? They love to see a fighter talk trash and back that s— up. That’s what it is. In the fight game, you can’t talk trash forever. You love to see the build up, and you love to see them say what. But then when you see the fight, you’re interested.
“Who is going to back up what they say they were going to do. Each time I’ve come out and dominated each person you’ve put in front of me.
Shields talks about Christina Hammer fight
Being knocked down, I still got back up and won. Fighting against a girl 24-0 with 11 knockouts. I got in there and made her retire. She’s not boxing no more. Christina Hammer is done. Even with this girl Ivana.
“I was going to smoke her in Flint. I got on the scale in Flint, and I made 154 lbs. The incident got the fight canceled, and now we’re back here, and another coach with the same attitude talking the same trash. Look, there’s no place like that in the sport of boxing. Let the fighters talk trash, and the coaches shut up. Be quiet or else you get your a– back in the ring and fight. That’s what you do,” said Shields.
“I’m taking this fight more seriously than before and I gave everything into training, and I’m ready. She can talk saying she’s going to knock me out. Whatever. She doesn’t have that power and she will not knock me out. I have good defense and I know I have power so I’m going to knock her out.”
“Most definitely I view this as a coming out party. Tomorrow night you’re going to see me real sharp. Speed and great defense, and we’re going to make easy work tomorrow night.”
I’m very excited about Friday night, January 10th. We had a terrific press conference with a great turnout and full room. Both fighters spoke really well. It’s pretty amazing that the first big televised fight nights of the years will feature two significant world title fights.
Claressa Shields is fighting Ivan Habazin, and Alicia Napoleon is fighting Elin Cederroos for the unified super middleweight title. So it’s an honor to be involved in this event. I think it’s going to be a great night of boxing. We’ve had an increase in ticket sales, and I’m excited about that. Jaron Ennis is fighting Bakhtiyar Eyubov.
Salita talks Ennis vs. Eyubov fight
He [Ennis] fought on our event on October 5th, and it was the first time that I’ve seen him live, and he looked tremendous. And then Bakhtiyar Eyubov was a can’t miss prospect. He fought on ShoBox several times. I think he’s an exciting tough guy. This is the biggest fight of his career. I think this is a great opportunity and he’s gotten himself in great shape.
He’s a short, stocky guy. This is like clash of styles. Ennis is like a slick, skilled boxer, and Bakhtiyar is in your face and wants to rough you up and knock you out. So that’s going to be a great fight. That’s going to be the co-feature, and Claressa vs. Ivana Habazin is going to be a great, great card.”