Claressa Shields, a two-time U.S. Olympic gold medalist boxer, has signed with Salita Promotions.
The signing comes just a few days before Shields is scheduled to have her third fight, against Mery Rancier Friday night, with the promotional company led by Dmitriy Salita—a former junior welterweight world title challenger.
Shields will face Rancier (7-8-3, 5 KO’s) in an eight-round super middleweight bout at the Masonic Temple in Detroit.
“I thank Salita Promotions for the commitment they have shown to me,” Shields said in a statement. “I promise all boxing fans that I will dedicate myself to being not only the world’s No. 1 female boxer and No. 1 pound-for-pound, but also a torch-bearer for boxing and women the world over. I can’t wait to get in the ring on June 16 to continue the journey.”
Salita regularly promotes fights in Michigan—Shield’s home state.
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“Salita Promotions is to be commended for their commitment to Claressa Shields,” Mark Taffet, Shields’ co-manager said. “Dmitriy’s knowledge and expertise in Claressa’s home-base market of Detroit provides the perfect complements to Claressa’s once-in-a-century talent and determination to advance women’s boxing and change the sport of boxing forever.”
After winning the gold medal at both the London and Rio Olympics—becoming the first American to win back-to-back Olympic gold medals—Shields turned pro in November. In her pro debut, she won a four-round decision against Franchon Crews. In her second fight, Shields knocked out Szilvia Szabados in March.
“Claressa is an outstanding world-class athlete, who has the ability to transcend sports like Michael Jordan and Serena Williams,” Salita said. “She also has the charisma to appeal to a broad new generation of fans, who will tune in to watch her fights and will want to come to arenas to experience her performance live.