Shakur Stevenson: “So Now Can I Enter The Conversation Of The 4 Kings?”
By: Hans Themistode
For much of the 1980s, Thomas Hearns, “Sugar” Ray Leonard, “Marvelous” Marvin Hagler, and Roberto Duran defined a star-studded time in the sport of boxing. With all four making their mark by winning multiple world titles spread across numerous weight classes, many have searched far and wide for the new crop of generational fighters that can and will usurp them.
Presently, the highly talented quartet of Gervonta Davis, Ryan Garcia, Devin Haney, and Teofimo Lopez – has been viewed as this generation’s version of those previously named Hall of Famers.
Though fresh off becoming a two-division titlist and in the same age range as his contemporaries, Shakur Stevenson is seldom mentioned amongst them. However, after watching the first amongst those four in Lopez suffer defeat for the first time in his career this past weekend at the hands of George Kambosos Jr., Stevenson is wondering if his name can now replace Lopez in the grand scheme of things.
“So now can I enter the conversation of the 4 kings?” Asked Stevenson on his social media account.
Before this weekend’s mostly unexpected result took place, Lopez enjoyed a lofty ranking in virtually every credible pound for pound list. His placement along the sports best, mostly arrived after registering the most impressive victory of his career against Vasyl Lomachenko late last year.
Despite heading into their showdown as a sizable underdog, Lopez both outworked and outboxed the Ukrainian pound-for-pound star. In the process, he nabbed the IBF, WBO, WBA, and WBC Franchise lightweight titles.
Following the win, Lopez was forced to sit on ice. Though he was ordered to defend his newly won titles against Kambosos Jr., his mandatory challenger, several months ago, the 24-year-old saw their showdown suffer countless setbacks postponements.
As Lopez and Kambosos Jr. finally swapped fists at Madison Square Garden’s Hulu Theater this past weekend, the supremely confident young star was flippant in his approach to his unheralded opponent.
Ultimately, Lopez paid the price as he was dropped in the opening round en route to having his title reign truncated via split decision.
While Stevenson was once lobbying for his name to replace Lopez in the pantheon of young stars, the former Olympic silver medalist has seemingly changed his mind. In the opinion of the two-division champion, it’s pointless to have his standing elevated to the same level of his peers. Instead, he’s more interested in being recognized as a notch above.
“Nah, I’m good I don’t want it,” continued Stevenson. “I rather stand alone.”
Shakur Stevenson: “I Want To Fight Chris Colbert In 2022”
By: Hans Themistode
Even with his newly won WBO super featherweight title, Shakur Stevenson is anxious to get his hands on even more gold.
The former 2016 Olympic silver medalist, fresh off his one-sided victory over Jamel Herring, has called for a unification showdown against WBC belt holder, Oscar Valdez. Although Stevenson’s number one target is Valdez, he’s now veering away from the Mexican native in favor of facing someone else from his 130-pound weight class.
“I want to fight Chris Colbert in 2022,” said Stevenson on his social media account.
Colbert, 25, might be in only the infancy stages of his career but the Brooklyn, New York, native has gained a reputation of being brash, flamboyant, and filled with hubris.
Before Colbert directs his attention towards a showdown against Stevenson, he has his sights on winning his first world title. In January of 2020, Colbert easily outpointed Jezzrel Corrales to nab the WBA interim super featherweight title. Colbert would ultimately go on to defend his crown on two separate occasions. Most recently, he handed Tugstsogt Nyambayar a lopsided decision defeat in July earlier this year.
Since then, Colbert has seen his interim title reign come to an abrupt end, thanks to the WBA sanctioning body attempting to put an end to the proliferation of world titles across all weight classes. As a result, Colbert was moved from interim titlist to mandatory challenger to WBA full titleholder, Roger Gutierrez.
In the mind of Stevenson, he’s fairly confident that Colbert will take care of business against Gutierrez. Once the New York native begins his own title reign at 130 pounds, Stevenson urges Colbert to square off against him in the first defense of his crown.
“Tell him to unify with me after he beat that bum up.”
With both fighters still relatively early in their respective careers, at one point, Colbert readily admitted that a showdown against Stevenson was one he believes could be a super fight sometime down the line. However, with Stevenson wanting to square off against him sooner rather than later, Colbert seemingly has no issue with placating his wishes.
“Shakur Stevenson is p*ssy and he act like he’s like that,” said Colbert in response to Stevenson. “He know my body but let’s make it happen, 2022.”
Shakur Stevenson: “You [Teofimo Lopez] Can’t F With Me”
By: Hans Themistode
Teofimo Lopez is extremely proud of what he was able to accomplish late last year.
The 24-year-old New York native walked into his showdown against Vasyl Lomachenko as a considerable underdog. Despite most of the betting world expecting him to come up short, Lopez went on to dominate the early portion of their showdown before ultimately holding on to eke out a close decision win.
At the time, Lomachenko was considered by many to be the best pound-for-pound fighter in the world. And while Lopez is convinced that he’s now the superior fighter, he also believes that Lomachenko would cause fits to any and everyone at both 130 and 135 pounds.
“Lomachenko would beat up Tank,” said Lopez to a group of reporters. “Lomachenko would devour Devin Haney, Lomacehnko would beat Shakur.”
As Lopez’s comments have made the airwaves, Stevenson has gotten wind. Although the newly crowned 130-pound titlist could have aimed his vitriol at just Lopez, he instead set his sights on both Lopez and Lomachenko.
“Boy you or Loma can’t f with me,” said Stevenson on his social media account. “Don’t put me in no convo.”
Stevenson, a former Olympic silver medalist, is fresh off a career-best performance. Just a few short weeks ago on October 23rd, at the State Farm Arena in Atlanta Georgia, Stevenson ripped away the WBO 130 pound title from former champion, Jamel Herring.
Currently, Stevenson is hoping to add even more gold to his ever-growing collection as he’s targeting a matchup against WBC champion, Oscar Valdez. In addition to a bout against Valdez, Stevenson has expressed a desire to take on Lomachenko as well. However, Stevenson has acknowledged that a showdown between the pair is unlikely with Lomachenko currently campaigning five pounds north.
Although it appears as though Stevenson and Lopez are now at odds, the WBO 130 pound titlist quickly put that narrative to bed.
“He cool peoples. I support him. I’m just telling it like it is.”
Oscar Valdez Isn’t Interested In Facing Emanuel Navarrete: “I Truly Want Shakur, Let’s Get It On Right Now”
By: Hans Themistode
Seemingly everywhere Oscar Valdez turns, he hears his name on the lips of a 130 pounder.
The newly crowned WBC super featherweight champion staked his claim earlier this year with a one-sided drubbing over former titlist, Miguel Berchelt. Despite being considered a sizable underdog, Valdez went on to drop Berchelt a total of three times before closing the show in the 10th round.
Since wrapping that world title around his waist, Valdez’s name has become ubiquitous. Although the callouts have been nonstop, Valdez enjoys hearing that so many fighters want to take him on.
“It feels good because everybody wants to get the WBC belt,” said Valdez to ESNEWS. “Everyone wants to go against the champ.”
Amongst the many that are eyeing a showdown against Valdez is Shakur Stevenson. The former 2016 Olympic silver medalist is coming off a dominant victory over Jamel Herring. Following Stevenson’s win, he placed his newly won WBO title over his shoulder and proceeded to call for a unification showdown against Valdez.
Admittedly, Valdez acknowledges that Stevenson is a truly skilled fighter. That said, with both fighters signed to the same promotional company in Top Rank, Valdez doesn’t see why the fight can’t and won’t happen soon.
“Shakur has that belt, I have a belt, why not make the fight? The best have to fight the best. If we can make the fight happen now, let’s make it happen.”
Regardless of both fighters chomping at the bit to swap fists against one another, promoter Bob Arum has other ideas. While he would also like to see both Stevenson and Valdez face-off, he’s attempting to put together a mini 130-pound tournament.
On one side this presumed tournament would be a showdown between Valdez and WBO 126 pound champion, Emanuel Navarrete. The Mexican native is fresh off a fight of the year contender against Joet Gonzalez earlier this year. On the other side of the bracket would be a matchup between Stevenson and Berchelt. Following their respective victories, the winners would meet in a 130-pound unification.
Although Arum is hoping to finalize those matchups by the first quarter of 2022, Valdez isn’t entirely interested in taking part. In the end, the WBC belt holder has made his feelings succinct in terms of what he wants to do next.
“I truly want Shakur. The only reason is because he’s been calling out my name for quite some time. I don’t want nobody to think I’m ducking. Let’s do the fight, let’s get it on right now.”
Shakur Stevenson Likely To Face Miguel Berchelt Says Bob Arum
By: Hans Themistode
It appears as though Shakur Stevenson is on the verge of getting exactly what he wants. He’ll just have to wait slightly longer than he would like.
Just a few short weeks ago, the former 2016 Olympic silver medalist truncated the title reign of former WBO 130 pound champion, Jamel Herring. Stevenson picked his man apart in front of a crowd of just over 5,000 at State Farm Arena in Atlanta, Georgia.
Once Stevenson ripped away Herring’s title and wrapped it around his 24-year-old waist, he immediately turned his attention to WBC belt holder, Oscar Valdez. For months now, Stevenson has wanted to snag away both Valdez’s title and his perfect record. But while the two-division titlist was hoping to face him next, promoter Bob Arum has other ideas.
“I want Valdez to fight Emanuel Navarrete,” said Arum during an interview with SkySports. “And to match Shakur against maybe [Miguel] Berchelt, who Valdez beat in a spectacular fight. We’d see how Shakur does with Berchelt, then we can match the winners.”
As previously mentioned by Arum, Berchelt was last seen in the ring suffering the most lopsided loss of his career. On February 20th, at the MGM Grand Bubble in Las Vegas, Nevada, Berchelt squared off against Valdez in an all-Mexican showdown. By and large, Berchelt was expected to retain his WBC title. With that said, Valdez would put on a career-best performance, dropping Berchelt a four total of times before picking up a tenth-round stoppage victory.
Berchelt has since hinted at the idea of moving up in weight but at the moment, still competes at 130 pounds. While Stevenson has pushed back at the thought of facing anyone other than Valdez next, Arum is hoping to change his mind.
Long before Stevenson snagged his second world title in as many weight classes, the long-time promoter has been intrigued by the idea of having Valdez take on Navarrete.
Presently, the 126-pound champion would be forced to move up to 130 pounds in order to face Valdez. The come-forward Mexican recently fought a fight of the year contender against Joet Gonzalez, winning a close unanimous decision.
In the terms of when Arum plans on putting together this mini 130-pound tournament, the first quarter of 2022 seems like the logical answer.
“I think that’s the way to go. That’s what we will suggest to them. I hope to have Shakur back in the ring in March or April. Same thing with Valdez and Navarrete.”
Bob Arum Mulling Over Possible Oscar Valdez Vs. Emanuel Navarrete Showdown
By: Hans Themistode
Bob Arum has always been impressed with Emanuel Navarrete but his admiration for the WBO featherweight champion has seemingly gone to another level.
The long-time promoter sat comfortably in his ringside seat less than two weeks ago as Naverrete defended his world title against Joet Gonzalez. Arum couldn’t keep himself from smiling as the long-reigning champion fought a fight of the year contender en route to prolonging his championship status.
The 126-pound landscape has a slew of great fighters that Arum is more than willing to put his Top Rank promoted champion against. With that said, Arum is also intrigued by the possibility of Naverette moving up in weight to take on WBC 130 pound champion, Oscar Valdez.
“There’s a lot of places and a lot of good featherweights he can fight,” said Arum to FightHype.com. “What about him and Valdez? That would be some fight.”
A showdown between Valdez and Navarrete could placate several including the fighters, Arum, fight fans, and media pundits. However, Shakur Stevenson would be none too pleased if their contest were to take place next.
The newly crowned WBO 130 pound champion truncated the title reign of Jamel Herring this past weekend at State Farm Arena in Atlanta, Georgia. Following his win, Stevenson took aim at Valdez and claimed that Arum would be “protecting” his WBC champion if he placed him in the ring with Navarette as opposed to himself.
In spite of Stevenson’s criticism, the former 2016 Olympic silver medalist could be given no choice but to wait patiently on the sidelines.
Valdez, to his credit, has publicly asked for a showdown with Stevenson as well. The 30-year-old, much like Stevenson, recently wrapped another world title around his waist as he dismantled Miguel Berchelt earlier this year. Just a few months later, Valdez saw his stock take somewhat of a hit after eking out a controversial unanimous decision win over Robson Conceicao on September 10th.
With both world champions, albeit from different weight classes, pulling off recent victories, Arum has placed the ball in their court in terms of making their contest a reality.
“If the fighters sort of like the fight, it’s easy to make.”
Shakur Stevenson: “I Need To Be Undisputed”
By: Hans Themistode
The taste of gold was satisfying to Shakur Stevenson but it wasn’t enough to placate his appetite for more.
The former 2016 Olympic silver medalist scored a decisive 10th round stoppage win this past weekend at State Farm Arena, in Atlanta Georgia against Jamel Herring.
After outboxing Herring in the early goings, Stevenson turned up the heat in the second half of their contest. The result was a devastating one for the former marine as he was sliced and diced several times over before ultimately succumbing to the relentless pressure of his man.
Stevenson flashed a bright grin as he strapped his newly won title around his waist. He cheesed even wider as he thought about mouthwatering matchups against the rest of the division’s titleholders. Although he opted to leave the 126-pound weight class with just one championship belt to his name, Stevenson refuses to move on from his second weight class without stripping every 130 pounder of their world title.
“I need every title at 130,” said Stevenson to Barak of DAZN following his victory. “At the end of the day, I need to be undisputed.”
In a perfect world, Stevenson will continue his undisputed journey with a unification showdown against WBC belt holder, Oscar Valdez. Stevenson has long called for the Mexican native to accept his callouts and meet him in the center of the ring. Valdez, to his credit, has continued to reiterate his willingness and desire to face Stevenson as well.
Despite both showing an interest in signing their names on the dotted line, a contest between the pair seems incredibly unlikely. Instead, promoter Bob Arum has revealed that a matchup between Valdez and 126-pound champion, Emanuel Navarrete, is the most likely route.
Whether Stevenson has his wish granted by facing Valdez next, is somewhat inconsequential in the immediate future as long as he faces the other titleholders at 130 pounds. In the grand scheme of things, the 24-year-old is simply gaining inspiration from another young, up-and-comer that etched his name in the history books with his own undisputed title run just last year.
“I saw Teofimo do it and I need that to happen for me too.”
Shakur Stevenson Would Love To Face Vasyl Lomachenko: “Most Definitely, I Don’t Duck No Action”
By: Hans Themistode
A full 24 hours hasn’t passed quite yet but Shakur Stevenson is already taking aim at some of the bigger names in, or around, the super featherweight division.
Just a few short hours, the former 2016 Olympic silver medalist dominated long-standing WBO super featherweight belt holder, Jamel Herring. The two clashed in the main event slot at State Farm Arena, in Atlanta Georgia, late last night.
From the moment the opening bell rang, Stevenson showed exactly why he was pegged as an overwhelming favorite. The New Jersey native sliced and diced through the defense of Herring and made it look incredibly easy in the process. A crowd of just over 5,000 may have rooted Herring on, but Stevenson simply smiled as he continued his assault.
With Stevenson pitching a near shutout, referee Mark Nelson mercifully called a stop to their contest in the tenth round.
As Stevenson now scours the 130 pound landscape, very few names intrigue him. However, if a showdown against Vasyl Lomachenko can be made, Stevenson would love to square off against him next.
“Most definitely,” said Stevenson when asked about the possibility of facing Lomachenko next by Mike Coppinger of ESPN. “But last I checked, he said he was staying at 135. I’m down for a fight, I don’t duck no action.”
Long before Stevenson staked his claim as arguably the best fighter at 130 pounds, Lomachenko was viewed as just that. During his super featherweight run, the Ukrainian star unseated the likes of Roman Martinez, Nicholas Walters, and Guillermo Rigondeaux.
After laying waste to many of the top names in the division, Lomachenko opted to face bigger men one-weight class higher at 135 pounds. So far, the former two-time Olympic gold medalist has proven to be just as dominant, getting his hands on three of the four major world titles in the division, before coming up just short in his bid to become an undisputed world champion against Teofimo Lopez.
While it’s unclear if Lomachenko would be willing to placate Stevenson’s wishes and move back down to the division he once dominated, Stevenson is hoping that at some point, he matches up against WBC titleholder, Oscar Valdez.
Shakur Stevenson Dominates Jamel Herring, Stops Him In The 10th
By: Hans Themistode
Jamel Herring had an unspoken confidence about him heading into his WBO super featherweight title defense against mandatory challenger Shakur Stevenson. That self-belief, however, was immediately zapped away the moment the opening bell rang.
Despite sharing a cordial relationship outside the ring, there was nothing friendly about their encounter. In front of a mostly sold-out crowd at State Farm Arena, in Atlanta Georgia, Stevenson came out aggressive in the opening period. Known mostly for his ability to box and move, Stevenson imposed his will early on.
The former 2016 Olympic silver medalist ripped off several hard shots to the mid-section of Herring and continued with a healthy barrage upstairs. Herring, on the other hand, appeared content with walking through fire as he covered up and allowed the punches to glance off his gloves.
Stevenson continued his assault into the second round. Although Herring appeared to be just fine standing in the comfort zone of Stevenson, the former featherweight world titlist made him pay. Stevenson moved away from the unsuccessful straight rights and lefts and opted to curl his punches around the guard of his man. Stevenson’s newfound attack worked perfectly as Herring was repeatedly battered and walked down.
With an ever-growing glow of confidence, Stevenson began putting his shots together even more. The young and brash multiple division titlist picked up the pace in the middle rounds as he continued to butcher and pick apart Herring on the outside.
In the midst of a dominant performance, Stevenson was taken aback in the seventh. A visibly frustrated Herring pounded his gloves together and began to let his hands go. For the first time all fight long, Stevenson began taking several steps back as Herring continued to push the pace.
Despite Herring’s ability to adjust on the fly, Stevenson quickly followed suit. He met Herring in the center of the ring and exchanged huge shots. At the start of the eighth, Herring’s eye looked like it had seen better days.
With a chance to close the show, Stevenson stepped on the gas in the following two rounds. The result was one he was hoping for, as referee Mark Nelson waved off their contest in the tenth round.
Although the pair hurled several verbal jabs at one another throughout the entire build-up, they embraced soon after and squashed their differences.
As for what could be next for Stevenson, Herring reiterated several times over that Stevenson has the ability to take over the 130-pound division.
Carl Frampton Siding With Shakur Stevenson Over Jamel Herring
By: Hans Themistode
There was a confident glow about Carl Frampton.
The former two-time world champion sauntered his way to the ring on April 3rd, at Caesars Palace in Dubai as a considerable favorite earlier this year. Standing across the ring from him on the night was WBO 130 pound titlist, Jamel Herring. Frampton may have believed that he would take care of business against Herring convincingly, but he was completely shocked at the overall skills of the former Marine.
What ultimately ensued was a short but painful night as Frampton was dropped and later stopped before subsequently retiring from the sport altogether.
As Herring patiently watches the clock wind down for his title defense against Shakur Stevenson later on tonight at State Farm Arena in Atlanta, Georgia, Frampton believes that his former rival isn’t getting his just due.
“I don’t think Jamel Herring gets the credit he deserves. He’s a good fighter, as I found out in my last fight,” said a chuckling Frampton. “Clever, willy, and mentally a very, very strong fighter.”
All of Herring’s attributes were accentuated all of those months ago. But even while the WBO belt holder has reeled off seven straight victories, including three coming in defense of his title, many are expecting Herring’s championship reign to come to an end unceremoniously.
In Stevenson, Herring faces one of the brightest young stars in all of boxing. Since picking up Olympic silver in the 2016 games, Stevenson has gone on to dominate everyone placed in front of him in the pros.
Even as the competition has gotten stiffer, Stevenson has continued to elevate his game. In his three most recent trips to the ring, the New Jersey native has failed to lose a single round, as he’s casually and effortlessly boxed circles around his opposition.
From first-hand experience, Frampton is well aware of the skillset that Herring brings to the table. And while he has nothing but the utmost respect for the man who brutally stopped him in six rounds, he believes that Stevenson is simply a notch above.
“I think he’s the younger and fresher guy,” said Frampton of Stevenson. “He has a lovely style. He also punches hard enough, something we’ve seen him develop over time. His ring IQ is fantastic and can do a bit of everything. His better boxing, ring IQ, and all-around game will probably be enough for him to get the fight.”
Shakur Stevenson: “He’s [Jamel Herring] Fighting Someone Who’s On A Whole Other Level”
By: Hans Themistode
Shakur Stevenson has been far more animated leading up to his fight against super featherweight champion Jamel Herring than usual. The two will square off in the ring at the State Farm Arena, in Atlanta Georgia in just a few more hours in front of a jam-packed crowd.
Currently, Stevenson is enjoying the public backing of the betting market. Despite Herring holding his world title for approximately two and a half years, he finds himself as a considerable underdog, something Stevenson definitively agrees with.
Nevertheless, Herring has built his career on making fools out of oddsmakers. Heading into his world title fight against Masayuki Ito in 2019, Herring was expected to come up short. Similarly, the same was assumed in Herring’s most recent contest against Carl Frampton. In both instances, Herring shrugged off his naysayers and turned in some of the finest performances of his career.
Admittedly, Stevenson pulled up a chair, flicked on the television, and tuned in to watch Herring take care of business. While Stevenson acknowledges that Herring deserves credit for what he’s done so far, as the former Olympic silver medalist juxtaposes his skillset to those Herring has faced in the past, he notices a glaring difference.
“He’s been fighting the best,” said Stevenson during an interview with Crystina Poncher. “You gotta give him the respect that he deserves when it comes to defending his title. But he’s fighting someone who’s on a whole other level.”
Whether Stevenson has stepped through the ropes as an amateur or now, in the pros, he’s been mostly lauded for his boxing skills. In 16 pro fights, Stevenson has combined to lose less than five full rounds.
In his most recent ring appearance, Stevenson pitched a shutout against hard-hitting Jeremia Nakathila. Picking up the one-sided victory may have added to his win total, but it didn’t spare Stevenson from receiving criticism for his safety-first approach.
Regardless of the scrutiny Stevenson found chucked in his direction following his non-eventful performance, he believes he shouldn’t be judged based solely on an anomaly.
“When they say I don’t take risks or chances, we gonna base that off one fight? I feel like in my other fights, I’m backing them up and doing what I’m supposed to do. So I just disagree with that.”
Shakur Stevenson: “A Lot Of People Want To See Me Lose But It Ain’t Gonna Happen”
By: Hans Themistode
Shakur Stevenson is walking a mighty lonely road at the moment.
Under normal circumstances, Stevenson is known as a crowd favorite. The former Olympic silver medalist has sublime boxing skills, continues to call out the best fighters in the world and more times than not, gives fans their money’s worth in the ring.
However, with Stevenson taking on a more aggressive persona for his showdown against Jamel Herring this Saturday night at State Farm Arena in Atlanta Georgia, Stevenson believes he’s turned into the villain. Although Stevenson is convinced that the boxing world wants him to fail, he flashes a bright grin before explaining how little he actually cares.
“I just be reading comments and seeing stuff,” said Stevenson during an interview with Seconds Out. “So I just think that a lot of people want to see me lose but they aren’t going to get what they want at the end of the day.”
Stevenson’s overwhelming self-confidence stems from how every single one of his contests has gone so far. Despite facing the likes of Joet Gonzalez and Christopher Diaz, to name a few, Stevenson pitched near shutouts.
No matter who Stevenson has taken on, the 24-year-old has shown respect and refused to engage in trash talk, more or less. In the case of his showdown against Herring, Stevenson has pulled a complete 180. During their recent face-off, Stevenson audaciously grabbed the WBO super featherweight title of Herring while jawing back and forth with the former Marine. That in turn, saw the pair get separated by onlooking security.
While Stevenson fully understands that he isn’t making any new fans with the way he’s conducting himself, in the end, he couldn’t care less.
“I think because Jamel is going to play the super nice guy and the good guy and I talk a little bit more than him. They want him to win because I guess he’s showing that he’s humble and a marine but at the end of the day, that ain’t got nothing to do with the fight.”
Regardless of Stevenson’s new attitude, the betting market is still in love with him. According to oddsmakers, Stevenson has been listed as high as a 10-1 favorite. The underdog status of Herring is something that the 130-pound belt holder has grown accustomed to.
In his most recent trip to the ring, Herring made the betting public appear foolish as he thoroughly dominated former two-division world champion, Carl Frampton. Herring would go on to score multiple knockdowns before stopping his man in the sixth round.
The win for Herring may have represented a career-best performance but Stevenson rolls his eyes at his recent accomplishment. Although he’ll saunter to the ring this Saturday night with the boxing world seemingly against him, Stevenson won’t give his naysayers anything to smile about.
“I worked hard this camp. I’m in great shape, I’m confident, I’m sharp. They can keep on wishing and praying but it ain’t gonna happen.”
Shakur Stevenson On Jamel Herring: “He’s Not My Friend, We Got No Relationship Outside Of Boxing”
By: Hans Themistode
Shakur Stevenson is visibly confused by the ongoing narrative surrounding his showdown against Jamel Herring. The two are slated to face off on October 23rd at the State Farm Arena, in Atlanta Georgia with Herring’s WBO super featherweight title on the line.
From the moment Stevenson forfeited his WBO featherweight title and moved up in weight in 2020, the former Olympic silver medalist has been calling for his shot against Herring. Considering that the two have been seen on numerous occasions attending fights and share many of the same inner circle, including pound for pound star, Terence Crawford, both Herring and Stevenson are viewed as being good friends.
However, Stevenson has shaken his head incredulously at those sentiments. While they are certainly cordial with one another, calling them friends is a bit of a stretch.
“[Jamel] is just a friend of my family,” said Stevenson during a press conference earlier today. “He’s not my friend. He’s not nobody I talk to outside of boxing. We don’t got no relationship outside of boxing. He’s somebody I see around. He messes with the same people I mess with. Other than that, we’re not friends. I’ve never really been his friend. He’s cool people. I don’t got no problem with him at all. It ain’t like I check up on him when I’m not fighting or he checks up on me. I don’t consider that a friend.”
Herring, 35, currently finds himself as a sizable underdog heading into their showdown. But being viewed as a likely loser on a particular night is something he has grown accustomed to.
In the end, the former Marine believes that everyone’s thoughts surrounding his showdown against Stevenson is simply conjecture.
Heading into his first title fight against Masayuki Ito in 2019, Herring was once again viewed as an underdog. Despite those thoughts, Herring ripped the 135-pound title away from the Japanese native.
Most recently, Herring’s title reign was expected to come to an end at the hands of Carl Frampton. The two tangoed this past April in Dubai, with Herring walking away with the decisive sixth-round stoppage victory.
As for Stevenson, he’s watched Herring up close and personal on several occasions. The two have spent time together during numerous fight camps and given one another tips along the way.
Now though, the 24-year-old has become interested in the golden trinket currently sitting on the shoulders of Herring. Regardless of the time they’ve spent together, Stevenson doesn’t plan on taking it easy on Herring in the slightest.
“I’m coming here to dominate. Jamel is a solid fighter. He has a great team around him, but it’s going to be my night. That’s how I feel. At the end of the day, I’m coming in there to handle business, and I’m going to make sure I win.”
Jamel Herring Set To Defend Title Against Shakur Stevenson On October 23rd, In Atlanta
By: Hans Themistode
Shakur Stevenson was left grinning from ear to ear once the ink dried. The former Olympic Silver medalist and one-time 126-pound titlist, officially signed his part of a bout agreement to take on WBO belt holder Jamel Herring. Shortly after, Herring placed his pen to paper to make their showdown a guarantee.
Now, the two will face off on October 23rd, in Atlanta Georgia.
Since capturing the WBO super featherweight championship against Masayuki Ito in May of 2019, Herring has gone on to defend his world title a total of three times. In his most recent trip to the ring, Herring took on former multiple division champion Carl Frampton. Despite holding a world title, Herring walked into their showdown as a slight underdog.
Despite the betting public expecting him to lose, Herring rose to the occasion and delivered a career-defining performance, dropping Frampton twice before ultimately stopping him in the sixth. While his victory over Frampton is widely considered the biggest of his career, Herring will once again attempt to defend his title as a prohibited underdog.
From the moment Stevenson dropped his protective headgear and turned pro in 2017, the New Jersey native has dominated the competition. In only his 13th professional fight, Stevenson captured the vacant WBO featherweight title. The former Olympic Silver medalist failed to defend his newly won trinket, however, as he opted to move up in weight.
Once Stevenson made the trek four pounds north, he immediately became the mandatory challenger to Herring. Originally, the two never appeared in a rush to square off in the ring. Having spent numerous training camps together and admittedly good friends, there was never an urgency to move their friendship to the side to swap fist.
Still, with the opportunity to become a two-division world champion before the age of 25, Stevenson continually called out Herring and demanded that he gave him his mandated title shot.
Herring though, candidly expressed more of an interest in facing WBC belt holder Oscar Valdez. Ultimately, the former Marine still has Valdez in his sights but will be forced to take on Stevenson beforehand.
While Herring knows good and well that Stevenson is an immense talent, the 35-year-old isn’t counting himself out, even if most of the boxing world is.
“I know it will be his toughest fight,” said Herring to ESPN. “I’ve been in there with better guys than he’s fought by far.”
Shakur Stevenson Vs. Jamel Herring Likely For Mid November
By: Hans Themistode
Despite being good friends, Shakur Stevenson continued to scream and shout for his mandatory title shot against WBO super featherweight titlist, Jamel Herring. Now, after winning the WBO interim strap against Jeremia Nakathila on June 12th, earlier this year, he’ll get his wish.
As first reported by Dan Rafael, formerly with ESPN, promoter Bob Arum has a set date of November 13th for the pair to face off. No site has been confirmed as yet but all signs point to their clash taking place next.
News of his title shot taking place soon, will bring an immediate smirk to the face of Stevenson. Since winning silver at the 2016 Olympic Games, the New Jersey native has been spectacular as a pro. In only his 13th professional fight, Stevenson captured the WBO featherweight title with a one-sided route over Joet Gonzalez. He was unable to defend his newly won belt, however, as he opted to move up in weight.
Both Herring and Stevenson have shared numerous training camp sessions and worked closely with one another. Still though, while Stevenson has great reverence for Herring as a fighter, his mindset has always been “business is business.”
As for Herring, the former Marine was hoping to secure a unification clash with WBC titlist, Oscar Valdez. The 35-year-old has reeled off seven straight wins since his defeat at the hands of Ladarius Miller in 2017.
Recently, Herring picked up the biggest of his career in his last ring outing. On April 3rd, earlier this year, Herring took on former multiple division champion, Carl Frampton. Despite being the underdog, Herring dominated Frampton, dropping him twice before finishing him off in the sixth round and ultimately sending him into retirement.