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Flint Boxer Claressa Shields is going pro. Here's why it matters.

Nov 17, 2016

November 19th is a big day for Claressa Shields.

Shields, who hails from Flint, will have her first match as a pro boxer.

Leading up to the event, numerous media outlets have covered Shields, including through social media via Facebook Live.

Some people, especially those from Flint, are excited for Shield's match. She's a beacon of light for the community.

For those of you that might not know about her, we have the information you need about the fight. 

Who, where, and when is Claressa Shields fighting?

Shields will face off against Franchon Crews who is also making her professional debut, according to ESPN's Dan Rafael. The fight will be a preliminary match before a match between Sergey Kovalev and Andre Ward. 

The fight begins on HBO's "freeview" in the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas at 7pm EST. 

Why are people excited about Shields?

Shields is from Flint — a city still under a state of emergency for its lead-contaminated water.

Shield's success highlights a Flint success story, as Michigan Radio's Steve Carmody reports

"One of the things she has done is really put us on the map for something else,” Flint Mayor Karen Weaver says. “We keep saying there will be another story for Flint…it will be all of these good things we have going on in our city.”

And Shields is certainly notorious. She's boxed at the Olympics twice. 

How has she done at the Olympics?

She's gotten gold. Twice. Michigan Radio's Carmody, reports on how Shields won two gold medals in the 2016 Rio Olympics and the 2012 London Olympics in the middleweight fight. 

And that's a big deal. No other American boxer has ever won back-to-back gold medals. So big that President Barack Obama has given her a shoutout. 

Needless to say, Shields packs a punch. 

How did she get into boxing?

Michigan Radio's Kate Wells previously reported on Clarence Shields, Claressa's father, describing how his daughter got into boxing:

“I taught everybody else how to fight, and nobody picked up the torch. And I told her the story of Muhammad Ali and his daughter, Leila Ali. And a week later she asked me, could she box? And I told her, hell no.”

Obviously, he came around. “[Because of] the fact that she wanted to do it. And she said what made her want to do it, was I told her it was a predominant male sport. And that made her mad. And if that’s the case, well I’m glad I made her mad!”