Claressa Shields on Laila Ali: “I Don’t Think She Ever Loved Boxing!”

Shields on Ali: She Never Loved Boxing

Claressa Shields and Laila Ali
Claressa Shields, Laila Ali (right)

Claressa Shields questions Laila Ali’s love for the sport!

Following a brief, but intense public spat between unified middleweight champion Claressa “T-Rex” Shields (10-0, 2 KO’s) and former super middleweight champion Laila “She Bee Stingin” Ali (24-0, 21 KO’s) the beef appears to be fizzling out. Each of the talented women appeared on numerous multimedia platforms to express, in heated words, how badly they’d trounce the other.


According to Shields, in an effort to make the fight, the 5 to 10 million dollars that Ali demanded to return from retirement had been secured. Yet, even with the financial requirement allegedly available, nothing more has come of all the tough talk.

Logically, as the would-be prizefight is slowly beginning to fade into oblivion, Shields’ has removed a great deal of the venom from her commentary about Ali. That does not mean her stance has changed, because it hasn’t. The Flint, Michigan native just doesn’t see the point in getting her feather all ruffled for nothing.

“I can’t take anything personal from her. At the end of the day, we are two strong women who want to fight. We can change the game for women’s sports period. I feel like this fight should happen, but I’m not going to trash Laila. She gave me my props today on First Take, she told me she said I was a good fighter.”


In the end, Shields would not be terribly surprised if the bout did not ever transpire. In her estimation, since her feud with Ali sparked up, Shields thinks that the daughter of the famous Muhammad Ali has finally done her research. And after having checked T-Rex’s paperwork, Shields believes that Ali has walked away putting a little more respect on her name.

“I feel like she must have went and did her homework because the way that she was talking, she had to see why I responded the way that I did, because I really know how to fight! She must have went and did her homework because now that her homework is done she is like, ‘oh she is a good fighter. She’s worthy and all this other stuff.’ Now she like, ‘oh shit!’ Yeah, you barked up the wrong tree and now you going to find out you got to back that stuff up.”


Another reason that Shields doesn’t believe that Ali will come back is due to her never having a true love for the sport of boxing in the first place. T-Rex theorizes that Laila Ali was physically imposing with good skills and had a legendary father. Further, she strategically used these elements to enjoy a long, successful career.

Yet, the middleweight champ thinks it was just a means to an end and not someone pursuing their honest passion. She doesn’t feel that Ali loved the game when she was in it. Therefore, she can’t imagine her returning to the game thirteen years after retirement to face a dangerous hungry young lioness such as herself.

“I don’t think she ever loved boxing. I think she did boxing just for the benefit she knew she could get from being her father’s child. And she did great with that and that’s been able to help her get the cooking and the Oprah and all the other stuff she got going on. But boxing wasn’t just enough for her, so look, I get it.”

In theory, this would have been a fun scrap to watch. Yet, as time goes on, it does look like this bout will stay refined to the mythical match-up bin.

By: Bakari Simpson

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