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Does the Chantelle Cameron-Katie Taylor 2 winner pass Claressa Shields for No. 1 pound-for-pound?

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Katie Taylor will look to avenge the only loss of her prestigious career to Chantelle Cameron in another attempt to become undisputed in two weight classes when she challenges for the undisputed super lightweight title at the 3Arena in Dublin, Ireland on November 25.

As much of the focus is on Taylor getting revenge, just as much attention should be paid to Cameron, who is aiming to knock off one of the best pound-for-pound fighters in women’s boxing for a second time. And this victory would be Cameron’s third in a row against a fellow pound-for-pound fighter.

Considering that this is a showdown between The Sporting News’ #2 and #3 ranked women on our pound-for-pound list, there is growing conversation that the winner could challenge Claressa Shields for the top spot on the P4P list.

So will that be the case? For this writer the answer is “no” and “absolutely not” and here’s why:

Even if Chantelle Cameron were to beat Katie Taylor a second time, it’s not enough to surpass Claressa Shields as the best women’s fighter in the world.

Claressa Shields is beginning to enter unique territory where people are desperately trying to find ways to knock her off her perch. It happens to the best of them from Roy Jones Jr. to Floyd Mayweather where their reign is so long and dominant that we start beginning to question the level of their competition. And when a new challenger to the throne surfaces, it’s easier to give them extra credit for their wins.

Does the Chantelle Cameron-Katie Taylor 2 winner pass Claressa Shields for  No. 1 pound-for-pound? | Sporting News

As good as Cameron has proven to be over the past couple of years, she still doesn’t possess the accolades that Shields does. Yes, she is the reigning and defending undisputed super lightweight champion, but another victory over Taylor would take a slight hit considering that the Irishwoman moved up in weight to challenge her. Stylistically, this was always going to be a difficult fight for Taylor, and Cameron utilized her physical advantages to turn her back the first time. If she were to do it again, what exactly would it prove?

In terms of pound for pound, Cameron hasn’t moved up in weight to challenge an opponent bigger than her while Shields has become a champion at super welterweight, middleweight, and super middleweight. Beating someone smaller than you doesn’t necessarily suggest a move up and over someone who has accomplished the seamless transition between weight classes. Also, Shields has shown no sign of regression in the ring and her dominance shouldn’t be threatened simply because another fight is picking up wins.

Shields’ tenure as a professional has been just as dominant as it was when she ransacked the Olympics on two occasions for gold medals. None of her fights have been close and she took a massive risk facing Savannah Marshall in her backyard only to come away with yet another convincing unanimous decision. Shields has been flawless as a professional and it’s likely that the 28-year-old will attempt to become the first fighter to win undisputed in three weight classes when she returns to 168 pounds.

The only true argument against Shields is inactivity. She only fought once in 2023 and there is an expectation that she’ll compete in the PFL before she heads back to the boxing ring. If that’s the argument, the appropriate consequence of her inactivity would be to remove her from the pound-for-pound list rather than bump her down. As long as Claressa Shields is an active boxer, it’s going to take a lot to dethrone her as the best pound-for-pound in the world today. Cameron beating Taylor a second time simply isn’t enough.

Women's boxing: "She may have won the fight but lost the war" - Claressa  Shields makes bold prediction for Katie Taylor vs. Chantelle Cameron rematch

No matter how good Katie Taylor looks against Chantelle Cameron, it’s not enough for her to dethrone Claressa Shields as the best in the world.

This one is simple, really.

Katie Taylor lost to Chantelle Cameron. Plain and simple. She wasn’t robbed. She lost against a better opponent and that blemish on her record will pin her behind Shields for as long as Shields remains undefeated. There is undoubtedly an appreciation for Taylor daring to be great by moving up and challenging in a new weight class. But she lost. And that’s something Shields has yet to do, regardless of what weight class.

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