Tensions have been high for the main event on Saturday night, but it’s fight that comes before that which seems to have the real bad blood.
Before Claressa Shields and Savannah Marshall take to the ring to fight it out for undisputed middleweight status, Mikaela Mayer and Alycia Baumgardner will face off to unify the WBC, WBO, IBF and The Ring super-featherweight titles.
Harsh words have been exchanged throughout the build-up for this one, which was postponed from its original date out of respect for the Royal family following the death of Queen Elizabeth II. Now, with just days until the fight, tensions are higher than ever.
The two fighters met for a Sky Sports press conference today and wasted no time in trading digs on the stage. Mayer reiterated her belief that she was a step up in opposition for Baumgardner.
“I want to embarrass her, I want to make her sound stupid. Because she’s said a lot leading up to this fight, and the truth is – whether she likes me or not – on paper … I am her absolute biggest test.”
Baumgardner was unfazed. When asked if she respected her opponent, she said she didn’t.
“There’s no respect. At the end of the day, this is the fight game. This girl’s trying to beat me, I want to beat her. I have great sportsmanship, but I don’t respect her. She talks too much, and when someone talks too much you gotta’ shut them up.”
The drama increased when the two came face to face, with Mayer telling Baumgardner ‘Don’t smile’ and Baumgardner calling Mayer a ‘Karen.’ It escalated from there, and the pair were broken up by security for the second time in two days. They meet for the weight in tomorrow.
Listen to the full exchange below courtesy of Top Rank Boxing:
FULLY MIC'D UP.
Welcome to the best rivalry in boxing today 🤬 #MayerBaumgardnerpic.twitter.com/mkRptk0e53
— Top Rank Boxing (@trboxing) October 13, 2022