Claressa Shields has new foe at LCA after Gabriels tests positive for banned substance

Nolan Bianchi
The Detroit News

The rematch is off.

Claressa Shields' opponent for a June 3 title fight at Little Caesars Arena for the undisputed middleweight championship has tested positive for a banned substance and is out of the fight.

Hanna Gabriels (right) tested positive for a testosterone derivative called clostebol, according to a press release, and will not fight Claressa Shields (left) on June 3.

Hanna Gabriels, who previously fought Shields at the Masonic Temple in 2017 and remains the only woman to knock Shields down, tested positive for a testosterone derivative called clostebol, according to a press release.

Shields (13-0, 2 KOs) will instead fight No. 1-ranked WBC, WBO and IBF middleweight contender Maricela "La Diva" Cornejo for the undisputed middleweight championship.

"I told my team to get me the best," Shields said in a press release. "Cornejo is a tall, tough Mexican full of pride who's in great shape and wants to beat me. She's ranked No. 1. That's exactly what I want for my Detroit homecoming and my fans around the world. I'm looking forward to a great performance on June 3.

Though the fight no longer has an element of vengeance — Gabriels is the only fighter to ever knock Shields down — it may now be more tightly contested. Cornejo (16-5, 6 KOs) has won three straight.

"When Shields faced a Mexican in the cage, she lost," Cornejo said, referring to a mixed-martial arts loss suffered by Shields against Abigail Montes in Oct. 21. "I just finished an amazing fight camp and am in the best, strongest physical and mental shape of my life."

Shields became the undisputed middelweight champion in October 2022 with a unanimous-decision victory over longtime arch-rival Savannah Marshall at The O2 Arena in London.

Twitter: @nolanbianchi