Saturday night all 4 Middleweight Titles are on the line for 3 year pro 🇺🇸Claressa Shields, 24, from Michigan, and 10 year vet 🇩🇪Christina Hammer, 28, of Germany.
Shields (8-0-0, 2KO) has shown improvement from her amateur and early fights as a pro after linking up with trainer John David Jackson. Although she always had a heavy output and work rate, Shields would fall victim to smothering her own shots, which Jackson appears to have made a priority to clean up. A question that keeps popping up in my head is, could Shields old style of using her size and strength to play the role of bull in the ring, actually be a benefit for her in this particular matchup?
All things considered, Christina Hammer (24-0-0, 11KO) is the better overall boxer here, and she will work behind her jab and shooting the right hand to keep Shields at bay. She brings a 3 inch advantage in height and reach and controlling the range will be key for her over the 10 rounds of the bout. Hammer is used to having control of the pace and dictating how and where she wants the fight to be fought.
Shields will need to get inside and disrupt Hammer’s gameplan, create pressure and make it rough. Another possible hurdle for Hammer, is that this will most likely be the first fight in which the crowd will not have her back as it will most likely be heavy for Shields, so anything that appears to be strong work for Shields will get a positive response from the crowd.
As already stated Hammer brings a significant advantage in terms of years as a pro, but the big question will be if Hammer can match Shields in strength and not be bullied around the ring. I believe John David Jackson knows that Shields will bring a style and dimension of strength that Hammer is yet to be up against herself and force her to prove she is up to the task.
I think early on Hammer will have success and win some rounds until Shields begins to close the distance and work on the inside, possibly making it a messy fight in spots. If Shields is able to get this fight on her terms I believe she will steal the majority of the close rounds with her punch output.
Claressa Shields by Majority Decision