“It Was Just a Lesson, Not a Life Sentence”: Days After Signing Multi-Year Deal With PFL, Claressa Shields Brutally Honest About Detaching From the Past

Published 09/01/2023, 2:18 AM EDT

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Claressa Shields remains the undisputed Middleweight champion in boxing. Her first title defense against Maricela Cornejo in June was a piece of cake. Amidst the lack of clarity on her next move in the sport, she has signed a multi-year agreement with the Professional Fighter League (PFL), with the fights to commence in the upcoming year. So, is it in light of her return to mixed martial arts that she penned an insightful message on X, Twitter’s current avatar?

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On March 5, 2021, with barely fifteen days until she turned twenty-six, Claressa Shields accomplished what no man had done before. A unanimous victory over Marie-Eve Dicaire made her the first person to become the undisputed champion in two divisions in the four-belt era. But three months later, she signed an agreement with the Professional Fighters League (PFL) for a three-year contract. Though she won her debut in mixed martial arts, the second fight in December proved unfavorable.

Don’t let the past weigh you down: Claressa Shields

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So yesterday, Claressa Shields wrote that it was the first day of her unplugging. Sharing her experience, she said that the 24 hours felt like a week to her. Additionally, she took inspiration from a well-known quote that read, “Never be a prisoner of your past. It was just a lesson, not a life sentence.” It means that to succeed in the here and now, a person must not let past mistakes and blunders hold him back. Instead of considering those lifelong imprisonments, they should be treated as lessons to improve and become a better person.

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It remains anyone’s hunch precisely under what context Claressa Shields shared that message. However, she must have surprised quite a few when photos of her entering an octagon with rival Savannah Marshall grabbed headlines. Incidentally, the latter joins the American boxer in the PFL, marking her pro debut in mixed martial arts. Their match, on October 15, last year, in London’s O2 Arena, proved a significant success. Hence, voices for a rematch have been heard across the corners. Per a Mirror article, reportedly, to psych up bout, the two could meet for a rematch, even in an octagon!

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Who, in your opinion, would be the right opponent to face Claressa Shields next? Please share your thoughts and views with us in the comments below.

Watch This Story: Everything you need to know about Claressa Shields vs. Shadasia Green

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Written by:

Jaideep R Unnithan

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Jaideep Unnithan is a Boxing writer at EssentiallySports. With over 400 articles authored at ES, Jaideep has built a reputation for diving deep into stories and producing detailed reports. Jaideep's passion for the sport of boxing was ignited when his father shared his experience of watching Ali vs Frazier live in the US.
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Edited by:

Snigdhaa Jaiswal

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