The Top 5 Potential Female Boxing Broadcasters
The combat sports world is changing all of the time. For women, more opportunities are being created daily. However, one aspect that could still use major renovation is commentary.
Just recently, WWE made Renee Young the first full-time lead commentator in the company’s history. While it is not new in the pro wrestling world, it is still an impressive feat.
What about the MMA and boxing world? I’m not just talking about backstage interviewers or correspondents. Daniel Cormier and Chael Sonnen are active fighters who are on commentary between fights. Paulie Malignaggi, a former boxer, brings something to the commentary table as well. It would be extremely interesting to see a woman involved, especially with how women’s boxing is now filled with various dominant athletes.
While it may not happen as soon as now, there are a few women who would be solid contributors to the booth. Here are the top five women who would be great additions to the home viewing experience:
Ali (24-0) is a former WBC, WIBA, IWBF and IBA World Super Middleweight champion. She also held the Female Light Heavyweight title for the IWBF. “She Bee Stingin” actually has experience compared to the other women listed when it comes to announcing. At one point, Ali hosted American Gladiators, The Early Show, and Fashion Police, among others.
Due to her career outside of boxing soaring higher and higher, it may seem unlikely Laila Ali joins the broadcast booth. In the world of combat sports, however, anything is possible. For the right price, she may just make the move.
One of the most dominant fighters today, Cecilia Brækhus is the only boxer on this list that is active.
At 36 years old, Brækhus (34-0) is lethal inside the ring. Her resume speaks for itself, as she is the first female fighter to hold titles in various weight classes for the WBA, WBC, IBF and WBO simultaneously. “The First Lady” is also making history for male and female boxers. She is the fifth fighter to hold all four aforementioned titles simultaneously. While only nine of her wins have come via knockout, her durability is what impresses boxing fans the most.
Just like Cormier and Sonnen, Brækhus could be a full-time fighter and a part-time announcer. Recently beating Inna Sagaydakovskaya in July, keeping active in the sport while promoting women’s boxing would be a solid gig for Brækhus.
Being a two-sport athlete isn’t that easy, but Lucia Rijker had no problem dominating both boxing and kickboxing throughout her career. Called by many “The Most Dangerous Woman in the World”, Lucia is as tough as they come.
“The Dutch Destroyer” (17-0 boxing, 37-0-1 kickboxing) held multiple titles in both sports. On the kickboxing side, she was an IWBA, WKA and ISKA Women’s Division World Champion. In the boxing world, Lucia was a WIBF Super Lightweight, WIBO Junior Welterweight and the European WIBF Boxing Champion.
Outside of competing, the fighting world has been her life. She played Billie 'The Blue Bear' Osterman in Million Dollar Baby. Inside the ring, Rijker was hired as a striking coach for Ronda Rousey in 2012, a key reason for her dominance in MMA. She also cornered Diana Prazak in a brutal WBC Super Featherweight title bout against Frida Walberg in 2013.
Currently, Lucia holds seminars for young athletes interested in fighting, becoming a true role model for many. Being a motivational speaker, the transition to the announce booth may not be so difficult for her.
One of the most decorated female fighters of all time, Ann Wolfe has enough credentials to talk up the likes of Clarissa Shields, Amanda Serrano and Katie Taylor.
You could say Wolfe (24-1 (1 NC)) was as consistent as they come. “Brown Sugar” went on an impressive 19-fight win streak from 2001-2006, winning 13 of those via knockout. During her run, she won the IFBA Jr. Middleweight, WIBA Light Middleweight, IFBA Super Middleweight, WIBC Super Middleweight, WBA Super Middleweight, NABA Super Middleweight, WIBA Light Heavyweight and IBA Light Heavyweight titles. That is a lot of hardware.
Wolfe’s fight analysis can be very valuable, especially because she already shares it. She currently trains multiple fighters, including her own daughter and light middleweight contender James Kirkland. While she might not want to leave her position, expanding her role in the boxing world could be a huge win for women.
When you are talking about trailblazers, you have to include Christy Martin. One of the most successful female boxers of all time, Martin (49-7-3) helped transcend women’s boxing. Her impressive win steaks and 31 wins via KO are something to behold.
Martin’s recognized as a WBC Women’s Lightweight and WBC Super Welterweight champion. Her career has influenced a plethora of young fighters, some whom she has even fought at one point. Holly Holm and Mia St. John are just a few examples. Her influence has also reached women outside of boxing. Amy Schumer has been reportedly working on a film surrounding Martin’s life for some time now. Whether it was surviving opponents in the ring or an attempted murder by her former husband, Christy is a true fighter.
As the first female fighter to be inducted into the Nevada Boxing Hall of Fame, “The Coal Miner’s Daughter” can provide a lot of insight in the commentary booth. What is the best way to honor someone who has given so much to women’s boxing? It would have to be providing her with the platform to call fights featuring the best boxing has to offer today.