PFL vs. Bellator results: Claressa Shields narrowly escapes massive upset with split nod over Kelsey DeSantis


Claressa Shields was a huge favorite heading into Saturday’s PFL vs. Bellator card against Kelsey DeSantis, and while she got the nod, she certainly had to sweat out the cards being read.

The multiple time boxing world champion and Olympic gold medalist bounced back from her lone MMA loss to pick up a razor close split decision win over Kelsey DeSantis in Saudi Arabia.

Shields came out and landed a ferocious overhand right at about a minute into the fight, then landed another hard combination before DeSantis was able to grab a clinch near the fence. Shields was then taken down rather easily, before moving to mount in the final minute of the first round. De Santis got a nasty armbar locked in, but to Shields’ credit, she was able to survive.

After defending a couple of takedowns and battering her opponent for the first two-plus minutes of the second, DeSantis was able to get a takedown, and when Sheilds got back to her feet, kept her controlled against the fence. Shields showed some improvements and almost got to the back of DeSantis, but ended up the round with a big flurry to the body and face.

DeSantis was able to get to full mount in Round 3 and used whatever energy she had to try and land punches. Again, Shields was able to get to the bell.

Shields improves to 2-1 as a pro MMA fighter, while DeSantis drops to 1-3.


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