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.
Shakur Stevenson Vs. Jamel Herring On The Verge Of Taking Place Next
By: Hans Themistode
Despite being close friends, Shakur Stevenson was always willing to put his camaraderie with Jamel Herring aside in order to get a crack at his WBO lightweight title. While reluctant at first, Herring has also decided to push their friendship to the side as well. Now, both parties are officially on the verge of facing off.
According to reports, a deal between Herring and Stevenson is nearly complete. Although nothing is set in stone just yet, their contest is likely to take place at the backend of the year. A feasible destination for their showdown is reportedly Atlanta, Georgia.
For Stevenson (16-0, 8 KOs), the road to becoming a multiple-time world champion has been expedited. Since turning pro in 2017, Stevenson parlayed a 2016 Olympic silver medal into a world title at 126 pounds in just two and a half years. While he completed a lifelong dream, Stevenson began thirsting for more gold. He immediately opted to drop his newly won title in his very next fight and began life in the lightweight division.
As per WBO rules, any champion from their sanctioning body who moves up in weight, immediately moves into the number one contender spot in their new weight class. Meaning, a clash with Herring (23-2, 11 KOs) was essentially inevitable.
The former U.S. Marine wasn’t initially interested in facing Stevenson, citing their strong friendship and a desire to pursue other fights. Earlier this year in April, Herring scored the biggest win of his career as he dismantled and ultimately stopped former two-division champion Carl Frampton in six rounds.
Immediately following the win, Herring placed all of his attention on WBC belt holder, Oscar Valdez. The Mexican native scored a huge win of his own earlier this year as he left long-time champion Miguel Berchelt comatose by the 10th round.
In spite of the magnitude of a Herring vs. Valdez showdown, the 35-year-old belt holder isn’t giving up hope on their contest becoming a reality. First things first, however, he’ll have to dispatch of a good friend, something he’s more than willing to do.
“It would have been a unification and for the lineal title,” said Herring to ESPN. “Why would I not push for that fight? If I have to go through Shakur to get this fight, so be it. He’s a superb boxer but I’ve been through worse.”
Shakur Stevenson: “Jamel (Herring) Is a B-level fighter, He Can’t Beat Me”
By: Hans Themistode
Shakur Stevenson continued doing what he does best last night, winning lopsidedly. The former featherweight world champion made it look easy against fringe contender Jeremia Nakathila at the Virgin Hotels in Las Vegas, Nevada.
The win for Stevenson not only preserved his undefeated record, but it also solidified his mandatory position for the WBO super featherweight title that is currently held by Jamel Herring. For Stevenson, he’s long shared a personal relationship with Herring as the two have trained with one another and sparred on numerous occasions.
Still, despite their friendship, Stevenson has no issue with explaining how easy he’ll make it look once they do face off in the ring.
“He can’t beat me,” said Stevenson immediately following his win. “It’ll look like a massacre, I’ve been in there with Jamel. He’s not as good as I am. Jamel goes in there in certain fights and he’s losing rounds. I have yet to lose rounds. I feel like I’m the best defensive fighter in boxing and Jamel can’t do nothing with me.”
Herring, 35, is fresh off picking up the biggest win of his career. In April earlier this year, the former marine dropped former multiple division champion, Carl Frampton, before ultimately stopping him in the sixth round. The win for Herring was the third defense of his title. Now, with Stevenson calling him out consistently, Herring has welcomed their showdown with open arms.
Although the current 130-pound belt holder has expressed an enormous amount of confidence in getting the job done, Stevenson believes the chances of Herring actually defeating him are slim to none. In the mind of the former 2016 Olympic silver medalist, it doesn’t matter how he chooses to fight Herring, at the end of the day, the results will be the same.
“If I got to box, I’m a beat him. If I gotta step to him, I’m a beat him. Jamel is a B-level fighter.”
Shakur Stevenson Outclasses Jeremia Nakathila
By: Hans Themistode
No matter what was said about his chances going in, Jeremia Nakathila believed all he needed was one punch to get the job done. With that said, the South African native couldn’t find the shot he was looking for.
At the Virgin Hotels, in Las Vegas, Nevada, Shakur Stevenson toyed with Nakathila over the course of their 12 round fight. The frightening power Nakathila displayed in all his previous contests was nonexistent as Stevenson neutralized his biggest weapon.
From the opening bell, Nakathila charged ahead and attempted to push Stevenson on his heels. That, of course, played right into the hands of Stevenson as he made his man miss and quickly made him pay shortly after.
With the first three rounds in his back pocket, the normally offensively laid-back Stevenson took his aggression up a notch in the fourth, flooring his man in the period. While everything came easy, at no point did Stevenson appear to have his man in serious trouble. After tasting his power on several occasions during their showdown, Stevenson became reluctant in engaging with him in the middle of the ring.
“I tried to [knock out Nakathila] a little bit, but I started getting hit with some solid shots,” said Stevenson. “I ain’t really like it, but next time I’m gonna work on moving my head a little bit more and step it up a little more.”
While Stevenson claims that he wants to return to the drawing board, the former 2016 Olympic silver medalist simply isn’t a heavy puncher. When it was all said and done, he easily took home a wide unanimous decision victory. But as his hand was raised by referee Celestino Ruiz and the WBO interim super featherweight title was wrapped around his waist, Stevenson stood stone-faced.
The victory may have preserved his undefeated record and solidified his world title opportunity against WBO belt holder Jamel Herring, Stevenson simply wasn’t happy with his latest outing.
“To be honest, I didn’t really like my performance,” Stevenson said. “I felt I could’ve performed a lot better, but it was an awkward fighter. You had an awkward fighter throwing hard punches, and he knows how to grab and get away. He was a real awkward fighter. That’s all.”
Shakur Stevenson: “I’ll Never Lose To 5-0”
By: Hans Themistode
Some fans may find it surprising but not all professional boxers are full-time. Unfortunately for some, the bills simply pile up higher than their pugilistic paychecks can afford.
For Jeremia Nakathila, it’s unclear if he has a second job for financial reasons or simply because he loves it but the 130-pound contender spends his off days putting criminals behind bars.
The hard hitting 31-year-old is a police officer in his hometown of Namibia in South Africa. In just a few short hours, Namibia will face his toughest opponent by far when he takes on former featherweight champion Shakur Stevenson.
Although Stevenson (15-0, 8 KOs) was always confident that he was going to pick up the win, upon hearing the news of what Namibia does when he’s not in the gym, Stevenson’s confidence went through the roof.
“I damn sure not losing to no cop,” said Stevenson during the final press conference. “I swear to God I’m not. I promise you. I swear to God, I’m not losing to no cop. I’ll never lose to 5-0.”
While Stevenson, has shown a great amount of hubris, he is in no way overlooking his opponent. Currently, Nakathila (21-1, 17 KOs) is riding a ten-fight win streak, all of which have come via stoppage. Considering that Nakathila has said on numerous occasions that the same fate is awaiting Stevenson, the former 2016 Olympic silver medalist is on high alert. Having watched heavy favorites fall in the most brutal fashion over the past few years, Stevenson refuses to follow that trend.
“I mean, at the end of the day, we seen a lot of upsets these past two years in boxing,” Stevenson said. “From Anthony Joshua, when he lost to Ruiz. You watched Josh Warrington lose to the dude [Mauricio] Lara. So, we seen a lot of upsets. You can’t just go in there and sleep on this dude. This dude coming to fight at the end of the day, so I’m well prepared, I’m ready for Saturday and I’m gonna give it my all.”
Oscar Valdez: “I Think Shakur (Stevenson) Can Beat Gervonta (Davis) But I Would Go With Gervonta”
By: Hans Themistode
Although it took place several months ago, Oscar Valdez hasn’t stopped smiling since defeating Miguel Berchelt in late February. The win for Valdez allowed him to wrap the WBC super featherweight world title around his waist.
Now, looking ahead, Valdez is currently weighing his options. Amongst them, is a showdown with former Olympic silver medalist Shakur Stevenson. The two have jarred back and forth and appear willing to face one another in the near future. While that option is appealing, so is a showdown against multiple division titlist Gervonta Davis. The Baltimore native is currently scheduled to move up to 140 pounds in an effort to become a three-division world champion as he takes on WBA ‘Regular’ belt holder, Mario Barrios.
If for some reason, Davis decides to drop back down in weight, Valdez would love to step into the ring with him.
“I think he would be one of my toughest fights,” said Valdez during an interview with BoxingInsider.com “I know he struggles to make weight but he did make it for his last fight against Leo Santa Cruz. Me and him would be a great fight.”
Any talks of a matchup between Valdez and Davis will be met with immediate fulmination from Stevenson. After moving up in weight in 2020, the New Jersey native promptly shifted his attention to Valdez, consistently calling for a matchup between them.
By no means is Valdez avoiding any of the competition at 130 pounds but he simply views Davis as the more dangerous and interesting contest. If by chance, Stevenson opted to move away from Valdez and chase a showdown against Davis, Valdez views it as an extremely competitive contest. With that said, if forced to make a pick, Valdez grinds his teeth before ultimately making his selection.
“I think styles make fights. I think Shakur can beat Gervonta but I would go with Gervonta. He’s a strong, strong guy.”
Shakur Stevenson Eager For Emanuel Navarrete Showdown: “I Can’t Wait For Him To Come Up To 130”
By: Hans Themistode
While Shakur Stevenson is still getting acclimated to life at 130 pounds, the former Olympic silver medalist continues to keep tabs on his old weight class.
Although it no longer concerns him, Stevenson sat back and watched closely as WBO featherweight belt holder Emanuel Navarrete, took on former Stevenson foe, Christopher Diaz. The Mexican native had absolutely no trouble in destroying Diaz at the Silver Spurs Arena in Kissimmee Florida last night. Navarette outmuscled his man early, knocking him down four times before stopping him in the final round.
After watching Navarette take care of business, the current 130-pound contender is now chomping at the bit to step into the ring with him.
“I can’t wait for him to come up to 130,” said Stevenson on his Twitter account. “He don’t strike me as a duck like these other fighters.”
Regardless of the pair campaigning in two different weight classes, only four pounds separate them. With that said, a move up in weight isn’t expected from Navarette anytime soon considering he just arrived at 126 pounds last year. Ironically enough, Navarette’s arrival coincided with the departure of Stevenson and the subsequent vacating of his world title, something Navarette would pick up immediately.
Currently, Stevenson is in the midst of training camp as he prepares to take on Jeremiah Nakathila on June 12th for the interim WBO super featherweight title. With a win fully expected for the New Jersey native, Stevenson is positioning himself to take on full titleholder, Jamel Herring, who is coming off a huge win of his own against former two-division champion Carl Frampton.
According to Stevenson, the game plan is simple, take care of business against Nakathila and then move on to a showdown with Herring. If everything goes the way he envisions it, then he’ll get his chance sooner rather than later to knock Navarette off his high horse.
“If he vacate, I’m fighting for the title June 12th but honestly, if he comes up, I wouldn’t mind him being my first challenger for my belt.”
Shakur Stevenson: “I Respect Canelo A lot, Andre (Ward) Would Be The Only Person I Would Say Right Now Could Beat Canelo”
By: Hans Themistode
Whether you hate or criticize Canelo Alvarez, the Mexican star is revered in the sport of boxing.
Although several fighters in or around his 168 pound weight class have attempted to chastise him, former WBO featherweight titlist Shakur Stevenson has nothing but praise but for the pound-for-pound star.
“I’m a big Canelo fan,” said Stevenson during an interview with Fight Hype. “You’re not going to hear me say anything bad about Canelo.”
Stevenson’s refusal to throw any dirt on the name of Alvarez is due to the work he has done inside of the ring. With world titles in four different weight classes, Stevenson can’t help but get excited when describing the attributes and mentality of the unified super middleweight champion that makes him so special.
“Canelo goes up in weight and fights whoever, he goes back down in weight and fights whoever. He got real good skills and if we’re talking about the best defense in boxing, besides myself, I think Canelo is the best defensive fighter in boxing. Canelo uses a lot of waist movement. He knows how to make you miss with his waist. It’s a lot of good things that Canelo does as a fighter and I respect Canelo a lot.”
Alvarez, 30, is currently sitting in his presidential suite in a Miami hotel as he prepares to take on mandatory challenger Avni Yildirim at the Hard Rock Hotel. Many, if not all, are expecting Alvarez to have a quick and easy night before moving on to face WBO titlist Billy Joe Saunders and possibly IBF belt holder Caleb Plant.
But while Stevenson respects every single fighter who steps into the ring, he doesn’t believe any of those aforementioned names will hand Alvarez a loss.
No, to the 23-year-old, you would have to be an all-time great to beat Alvarez. Ironically enough, Stevenson just so happens to be close friends with one.
“The only fighters that will beat Canelo is the special and different kind of fighters. If Andre Ward was still boxing, I would say Dre would beat Canelo. Dre knows boxing. Canelo wins these fights because he’s more knowledgeable then a lot of these other fighters but Dre is really knowledgeable too and a great fighter. Andre would be the only person I would say right now that could beat Canelo.”
Currently, Ward has shown little to no interest in lacing up the gloves again. After closing the chapter on his rivalry with Sergey Kovalev by knocking him out in the eighth round of their 2017 contest, Ward subsequently closed the door on his career as he retired immediately after.
With an unbeaten record through 32 fights, world titles in two divisions and several big wins, Ward was elected to the Hall of Fame in 2020.
Still, at the age of 37, Ward continues to stay in good shape and is constantly in the gym. Both fans and boxing pundits have reiterated that they would love to see him return to the ring to take on Alvarez. Stevenson is amongst that very group. However, the window on that mega showdown is closing and if Ward doesn’t take the opportunity soon, then Stevenson believes he should just leave it alone.
“Yea as of right now,” said Stevenson when asked if Ward would beat Alvarez currently. “But Dre can’t take too much years off. It would have to be like right at this moment.”
Shakur Stevenson: “Terence Style Is Just A Really Bad Style for Shawn Porter”
By: Hans Themistode
Former WBO featherweight titlist Shakur Stevenson continues to shake his head whenever a possible matchup between Shawn Porter and Terence Crawford is mentioned. With Porter holding the number one ranking in the WBO sanctioning body, the former welterweight belt holder is aiming to knock off Crawford and claim his belt as his own.
By and large, a matchup between the two is viewed as competitive and one that could go either way. To Stevenson on the other hand, he views their possible showdown as one-way traffic.
“Shawn Porter is a fighter who gives a lot of people problems,” said Stevenson during an interview with Fight Hype. “But in my opinion, styles make fights and Terence style is just a really bad style for Shawn Porter. Terence is a sharpshooter that likes to box, Shawn Porter runs in and tries to be ugly. I don’t think that’s a good style for Shawn Porter to try and fight Terence with.”
Although Stevenson has a hard time envisioning Porter giving Crawford any sort of trouble, he did admit that Porter is rugged and as tough as they come. In fact, Stevenson went as far as to say that Porter will find moments of success. However, those moments will be few and far between.
“He’s going to get some punches in don’t get me wrong. Shawn Porter is tough and a really good fighter but I just think Terence is faster than Shawn. He’s also a better and bigger puncher than Shawn. I just think it’s a bad style for Shawn.”
Regardless of whether or not a Shawn Porter vs Terence Crawford showdown is as one-sided as Stevenson believes it will be, most of the boxing world simply wants to see Crawford step into the ring against elite competition.
Despite having three losses on his resume, Porter proved that even in defeat he can give a fighter hell for a full 36 minutes. After losing a close split decision to Spence Jr. in September of 2019, Porter bounced right back with an easy win over Sebastian Formella this past August.
Following the win, almost a day hasn’t gone by where Porter hasn’t called out Crawford. At the moment, both sides are still working on the financial part of a deal while also exploring other options.
If everything can be worked out, then Porter will easily be viewed as the best fighter Crawford has faced as a 147 pounder. Yet, that statement makes absolutely no sense to Stevenson. The last time he checked, Crawford just knocked out Kell Brook a mere three months ago.
Brook, of course, outboxed Porter in 2014 to win the IBF title. To the former featherweight belt holder, the math just doesn’t add up to Porter being the toughest opponent of Crawford’s career.
“Can’t say that’s his toughest fight when he just fought Kell Brook, somebody that outboxed Shawn Porter as easy as possible.”
Steven’s words might technically be true, but many believe Brook was smack-dab in the middle of his prime at that time. Now, at the of 34 and several stoppage losses to his name, the British native simply isn’t the same fighter he used to be.
Still, for Stevenson, his point is the same. It doesn’t matter who is in the ring with Crawford, just do yourself a favor and avoid him for as long as humanly possible.
“A lot of people need to leave Terence alone, he’s a helluva fighter. Terence is a savage man.”
Shakur Stevenson: “I’m The Boogeyman In The Sport Of Boxing”
By: Hans Themistode
The big punchers are normally the ones that everyone is afraid of. The reason is simple, with one shot, they can separate their opponents from their consciousness.
Be that as it may, former featherweight belt holder Shakur Stevenson believes he is now the most avoided man in all of boxing. It isn’t because the Newark, New Jersey, native is one of the hardest hitters in the entire sport, but rather, his skills are seemingly too sublime for anyone else to take a chance in facing him.
“I be doing everything in my power to get these bigger name guys in the ring,” said Stevenson on his Twitter account. “All seriousness I’m the boogeyman in the sport of boxing.”
Although Stevenson’s career just started a little over three years ago, the 23-year-old has clamored for his shot on the big stage. During his short featherweight title reign, Stevenson (15-0, 8 KOs) attempted to unify titles with fellow champions Josh Warrington as well as Gary Russell Jr. Despite his pleas though, Stevenson’s efforts were of no avail.
Recently, the former 2016 Olympic Silver medalist, dropped his featherweight title due to the lack of big-name opponents as well as a still maturing body, in order to chase his second world title in as many weight classes.
As of now, Stevenson holds the mandatory position for the WBO super featherweight world title. Still, even with another championship seemingly around the corner, Stevenson has continued to demand much more established fighters take him on in the ring. In the opinion of the young star, no one either in his weight class or even in the same ballpark, has ever mentioned his name and he doesn’t see that changing any time soon.
“Let’s be real what big-name fighter even mentioning my name at or around my weight? I’m the truth. I can’t wait to show the ones who still don’t believe it.”
Bob Arum: “Shakur Stevenson Mark My Words Will Eventually Be The Face Of Boxing”
By: Hans Themistode
At this moment, very few will argue that Canelo Alvarez is the face of boxing. That may be good and well, however, his name at the top of virtually every pound for pound list and billboard across the world will soon be replaced according to promoter Bob Arum.
“Shakur Stevenson mark my words will eventually be the face of boxing,” said Arum during an interview with IFL TV.
Ever since making his pro debut in 2017, Arum hasn’t stopped gushing over the former 2016 Olympic silver medalist. The normal slow pace of a prospect was immediately sped up as Stevenson won his first world title in his second year and 13th fight. Now, just one year later, Stevenson is attempting to reel in his second title in just as many weight classes.
Landing a punch on the 23-year-old has become nearly impossible as his defensive abilities are always on display. During his short, yet successful career, Stevenson has been compared to some of the best to ever step foot inside of a ring such as Floyd Mayweather.
Having spent numerous years working with Mayweather, Arum understands the comparisons but he also believes Stevenson is beyond even the newly inducted hall of famer.
“He is a tremendous talent. At this stage in his career he’s better even than Floyd Mayweather was at the same stage and we promoted Floyd for ten and a half years.”
While Stevenson has continued to put in the work in the gym, those who he has surrounded himself with have helped mold him into who he is today. Arum in turn, has taken notice of his supporting cast and has heaped praise upon every single one them.
“I’m really thrilled with Shakur, I like the people around him. The trainer, his grandfather, the manager. Everyone is working together to make Shakur the superstar that he will be.”
Shakur Stevenson On Vasiliy Lomachenko’s Loss To Teofimo Lopez: “He Was Afraid To Step Into The Lion’s Den, A Scared Fighter Can’t Beat Me”
By: Hans Themistode
Any talks of Teofimo Lopez’s size as the main factor behind his career-defining win over former unified lightweight champion Vasiliy Lomachenko will be met immediately with a disgusted look from Shakur Stevenson. Lopez, a 5-1 underdog, outboxed and outworked Lomachenko in late October to become the youngest undisputed champion in boxing history.
Outside of a height and reach deficit against Lopez, Lomachenko himself has admitted on numerous occasions that fighting at 135 pounds places him at a size disadvantage on most nights. So while many have rightly pointed at the disparity in measurements between the two, for Stevenson, it wasn’t about the size of the dog in the fight but the size of the fight in the dog.
“I disagree that just because Teo was bigger that it was the reason he won,” said Stevenson on Max on Boxing. “With that fight, I feel like it had a lot to do with heart. I feel like Lomachenko is a great fighter but I feel like he didn’t have the heart that night to dare to be great.”
Through six perplexing rounds for Lomachenko, the former multiple division titlist kept his hands in his pockets as he refused to engage with Lopez. His early-round tactics were particularly surprising considering the bad blood between the two throughout the build up.
The tentative game plan of Lomachenko switched however, the moment the second half of their contest came rolling by. The Ukrainian product found it much easier to let his hands go and was rewarded as he tagged his man repeatedly. Lomachenko’s new-found aggression coincided with Lopez losing steam on his punches during the later rounds. The strategy he implored may have allowed him to climb back into the fight, but for Stevenson (15-0, 8 KOs), he viewed it as more cowardly than anything else.
“I feel like you can’t go in no fight for six rounds straight and not throw no punches at all. That’s not how you dare to be great. You got a power puncher in front of you and great fighter also. You got to step into the lion’s den and I think he was afraid to step into the lion’s den.”
Competing at 135, although he’s done so for several years, might be a thing of the past for Lomachenko as a drop in weight could be imminent. If that is in fact the route he decides to take, Stevenson would welcome him with open arms and clenched fists.
While on paper the two are similar in size and skill, what lies on the inside will be the biggest difference.
“A fighter who doesn’t dare to be great and don’t have that kind of heart doesn’t have a chance with me. A scared fighter can’t beat me. I don’t think it would be good for him to come off that loss and get in the ring with a Shakur Stevenson. I feel like I’m a go in there and beat him up because he has heart problems.”
Shakur Stevenson Bagels Toka Khan Clary On The Judges Scorecards
By: Hans Themistode
Shakur Stevenson was apoplectic as he watched his peers from the sidelines. The former WBO featherweight titlist sat back as Teofimo Lopez became the youngest undisputed champion in boxing history. He also stood by and took in the sights as Gervonta Davis continued to become a star with his win over Leo Santa Cruz.
Tonight however, it was his turn.
With the final slot in Top Rank’s boxing schedule all his, Stevenson made sure he didn’t waste it as he completely outclassed Toka Khan Clary. Although he was heavily favored, Stevenson expressed admiration for the skills of his opponent and vowed to take him seriously. He also promised to deliver a one-sided beating, something he did from the opening bell.
Clary came out popping his jab and showing that Stevenson wasn’t the only with a bit of speed in his hands. None connected however, as Stevenson simply smiled and continued to march forward. Clary would soon find himself playing defense as Stevenson continually snapped his head back with jabs.
Nothing in the offensive arsenal of Clary deterred Stevenson from doing what he wanted, when he wanted on the night.
If you witnessed one round, then you witnessed them all as they were virtually identical. Stevenson came behind a fairly low guard, avoided the offense of his man and made him pay for even thinking he could land a shot on him.
It was the ideal way for Stevenson to end his 2020 as all three judges scoring the contest gave him every round. The next step for the former 2016 US Olympian will be a date with one of the titleholders at 130 pounds. Stevenson was adamant about wanting to face the winner between WBO belt holder Jamel Herring and former multiple division titlist Carl Frampton. He has also set his sights on WBC champion Miguel Berchelt as well.
Shakur Stevenson Wants His Mandated Title Shot Against Jamel Herring: “I Can’t Turn Down No Title Shot”
By: Hans Themistode
Shakur Stevenson has never been afraid to step into the ring with anyone. But in the case of WBO lightweight titlist Jamel Herring, Stevenson has been reluctant.
Over the years, both fighters have grown to respect and admire each other. They’ve aided one another in terms of fight preparations and share the same inner circle. With Stevenson recently vacating his WBO 126 pound title to make the lightweight division his new home, he was thrust into the number one ranking for the Herring’s world title. But just a few months ago, Stevenson didn’t sound like a man who was willing to take his mandated title shot.
“The thing with that is I will fight Jamel if I have no other choice but to fight him,” said Stevenson to BoxingScene.com not long ago. “We work with the same people. Bo-Mac, Red, they help me out a lot, also. So, I’m not gonna get on record and call out Jamel Herring because me and him are real tight. Like, we all are locked in with the same people.”
At 130 pounds, Stevenson (14-0, 8 KOs) could be matched up with several notable names, but none of them would bring him an immediate world title. The New Jersey native is currently ranked number one in the WBO, number two in the WBC and isn’t ranked in the top ten in the WBA and IBF.
So while he cherishes his friendship with Herring, he cherishes the word champion next to his name a little bit more.
“I’m still cool with Jamel and Bo-Mac and everybody in his camp and everything. Ain’t no hard feelings or nothing, but it’s business,” said Stevenson during a recent interview with Boxingscene.com. “At the end of the day, me and him, we’ve gotta fight each other. It’s the fight business. It’s all business at the end of the day.”
Business is exactly what Herring is thinking of at the moment as well. After winning by sloppy disqualification during his last ring outing against Jonathan Oquendo earlier this year, Herring is lining up the biggest and most lucrative contest of his career against former two division titlist Carl Frampton.
Even though Stevenson knows how much Herring has been looking forward to that showdown, he isn’t going to sit back and allow it to happen.
“The WBO is ordering him to make his mandatory, and I’m his mandatory. I can’t turn down no title shot. It’s an opportunity to become a two-weight division world champ,” Stevenson said. “In only 15 fights, I don’t know who else has done that, especially at my age. So, I think it’s an amazing opportunity and I’m just ready to take advantage of it.”
In terms of how things would play out in a possible matchup between the two, Stevenson didn’t sound worried about their shared workout history. Just like every other contest in his short career, the former Olympic Silver medalist believes it’ll be just another walk in the park.
“I think it would be just like any other fight,” Stevenson said. “ I think that there’s levels. My level is higher than anybody in the 130-pound weight class. I’m just on a whole different level.”
Shakur Stevenson: “I just Feel Like I’m The Best Of The Next Generation”
By: Hans Themistode
Following each and every spectacular performance by one of the newer names in the sport of boxing, the coronation horns begin to blow. Whether it’s Devin Haney out boxing his opponents until he brutally knocks them out or Gervonta Davis wasting no time as he quickly sends his opponents off on a stretcher, thoughts of who will become the future of boxing quickly becomes the topic of conversation’s.
While the arguments ensue, somewhere in the New Jersey area, a heavy bag is being pummeled as a silver medal next to a gold world title belt sits as the only spectators.
Shakur Stevenson (14-0, 8 KOs) always finds questions such as who will become the face of boxing pointless as the answer is as obvious.
“I just feel like I’m the best of the next generation,” said Stevenson to Fight Hype. “I feel like I’m going to take over soon. Right now I just feel like I’m ahead of everybody.”
For as much as Stevenson wants to separate himself for his young contemporaries, the comparisons have persisted. But while he doesn’t throw shade at any of their skillsets, he does see plenty of holes in their games. A problem the 22 year old doesn’t believe he has.
“If you look at all of these young fighters, there’s something that they can’t do. You can point out some stuff that they can’t do. I feel like you can’t point out anything in my game that I can’t do. I’m not a one dimensional big power puncher. I can box, I can bang and I just win. I go in there and win.”
Win and dominate while doing so is something that Stevenson has done his entire life. Most observers have agreed that he is in fact a future star, but calling him a mere “star” just wasn’t good enough for promoter Bob Arum.
“I look at him as the southpaw version of Floyd Mayweather,” said Arum during an interview several months ago. ”I think he will exceed the performances by Floyd. He’s a rare, rare talent.”
Comparing Stevenson to the consensus best boxer of his generation is the greatest compliment Arum could bestow upon anyone. But for the former 126 pound belt holder, calling him a pure boxer is still selling him short.
“I just feel like I can do it all. If you watched my last fight I threw a lot of punches and stood in the pocket. I banged a little bit but if you want to sit on the inside all day then I can fight. That’s what people don’t understand about me, I can fight and I can do it all. Me at my best, I feel like I’m better than everybody.”