Claressa Shields has never been one to lack confidence and is now calling out some of the top male boxing stars, adding that she can beat them.
In an interview with TMZ, Shields, the newly-crowned undisputed women's middleweight champion, called out former world champion Gennady Golovkin, saying that she believes she has a shot at beating him. After talking about her experience with sparring male fighters in training camp before fights, Shields mentioned Golovkin's name.
"I spar with men. I drop men. I bust [men's noses]. I beat men up all the time... They may be stronger than me, but their boxing ability isn't like mine. GGG, he's older now, but I could give GGG a run for his money," Shields said.
But Golovkin was not the only male boxer Shields mentioned as she also called out current WBA "Super" welterweight champion Keith Thurman.
"I think I can beat up Keith Thurman ... I really do," Shields said.
Of course, the immediate question one has when it comes to an intergender boxing fight is the very likely power difference between the male and female fighter. Shields discussed that in greater detail and said she isn't worried about that as her boxing abilities would more than make up for it.
"Power for power isn't a question because what is boxing? Boxing is the sweet science. It's not about strength ... because people were saying Christina Hammer was stronger than me," Shields said. "They were saying all these girls were stronger than me, but did you not see the head movement that I had during the fight? See the defense? The offense? The traps I set!? If I were to get in there with a man, I would do a lot more of that. And, I do have some power. I'm not gonna say I'm stronger than them, but if I set up the right shots with the right timing?!?!"
Shields most recently fought on April 13, defeating Christina Hammer to become the first-ever undisputed women's middleweight champion to hold the WBA, WBC, WBO, IBF and Ring Magazine titles. In an interview before Fightful before the fight against Braekhus, Shields said she would like to have a fight against undisputed women's welterweight champion Cecilia Braekhus one day. That interview can be seen in its entirety in the video above.