Shields was the only boxer or mixed martial artist to make the list. The 26-year-old is a two-time Olympic gold medalist and is undefeated as a professional boxer at 11-0. This year, Shields went 2-0 in boxing, with victories over Marie-Eve Dicaire and Ivana Habazin, both via unanimous decision.
Shields also made her MMA debut with the Professional Fighters League. She was successful in her debut, pulling out a come-from-behind victory over Brittney Elkin. She would then lose her follow-up bout to Abigail Montes, however.
Heading into her bout against Montes, Shields acknowledged that she’s learning as she goes, but expressed rocksteady confidence once her overall skillset matches her hands.
“I’ve been learning on the job, and I’ve been just getting better and better,” Shields told The Albuquerque Journal. “… I’m being taught armbars and stuff, and I’m being taught how to get out of them. They’re showing me rear naked chokes, and I’m doing really good in wrestling and getting in great positions.
“That’s stuff that used to confuse me. Now I actually feel good doing them, and that’s just giving me more confidence for the future.”
Shields joins the ranks of NBA star Devin Booker, MLB’s Vladimir Guerrero Jr., and Dallas Cowboys starting quarterback Dak Prescott to make this year’s Forbes list, to name a few.
Shields is currently scheduled to box Ema Kozin on January 29 and is expected to make her MMA return next year as well, though a hard date has not been set as of yet.
Is there anybody else from MMA that you think would be a good addition to join Claressa Shields on the 2022 Forbes 30 Under 30 List?