On Thursday, Shakur Stevenson was defeated by the judges and was stripped of his championships. However, on Friday night, he defeated Robson Conceicao through a unanimous decision and supported his perfect record.
With the victory, Stevenson put a stop to his tenure at the 130-pound weight class and will now move up to the lightweight category, which has larger and more challenging bouts. Is Shakur prepared to go on Devin Haney, the uncontested champion?
Shakur Stevenson Is Ready for Top Lightweights
Or how about the ferocious puncher Gervonta Davis? What do you say we square up against Ryan Garcia? This was Conceicao’s second shot to win the championship, and, likely, he won’t have another one for quite some time.
Oscar Valdez, a former champion, and Emanuel Navarrete, the current holder of the featherweight championship, will square off in a bout that should not be missed now that the WBC and WBO titles have been vacated.
In other action on the program for tonight, Keyshawn Davis took care of business by recording another stoppage win and showing why he is one of the most promising young prospects in boxing.
Mike Coppinger shares his ideas, not just on these themes but also on a variety of others.
At 135 Pounds, Shakur Is Prepared for The Top Competitors
Once again, Stevenson showed that it would take a unique warrior to defeat him. His southpaw jab is like a piston, he has good range, and he throws a wide variety of punches, all while still being just 25 years old.
His deft hands kept Conceicao on the defensive all night long. Stevenson’s aggressive style and increased power throughout his earlier three bouts have made him an even more dangerous opponent at lightweight.
Only the best boxers in the world had a chance at defeating Stevenson, and none of them fought at 126 or 130 pounds when he held those titles. Happily, for him, his new home of P.O. Box 135 is filled with many talented boxers.
Lightweight champion Devin Haney, who is also a great defensive fighter, will defend his title against George Kambosos Jr. in a rematch on October 15 in Australia, risking all four of his championships in the process.
If Haney wins as predicted, he might fight Vasiliy Lomachenko in the spring; if Stevenson loses, he may have to wait until 2024 to face another top-tier opponent.
If Haney and Lomachenko ever meet, a two-fight contract between them is possible. Even though Gervonta Davis and Ryan Garcia (sometimes) promote fights at 135 pounds, they are also affiliated with rival promoters and networks, making it difficult for them to face Stevenson.
Who is signed with Top Rank and ESPN? Joseph “Jojo” Diaz Jr. and Isaac Cruz’s fight, albeit with different promoters, are nevertheless intriguing and perhaps simpler to make. Stevenson has shown he is ready to take on the top competition in his new weight class.
Conceicao Is Still a Potential Candidate
Conceicao was persistent and determined throughout the evening, winning three rounds on one scorecard but just two rounds on the other two. Conceicao, an Olympic gold medalist, was at a disadvantage since he did not meet the weight requirement of 130 pounds, but Stevenson did.
Considering Stevenson’s loss of championships, it seems likely that Conceicao will be given another opportunity to compete for one of the vacant belts in the next year.
Last September, Conceicao may have deserved to win against Oscar Valdez, but he sputtered in the last rounds and lost. Even though Valdez evaluated positive for a prohibited drug weeks before the fight, he was still allowed to participate, which fueled the controversy surrounding the match.
Ahead of the battle, the 33-year-old Brazilian was ranked No. 2 by both the WBC and the WBO. If his opponent didn’t make weight.
It’s probable Conceicao won’t drop too much in the rankings when those organizations organize vacant championship matches between their top two eligible candidates.
Oscar Valdez And Emanuel Navarrete Might Win
The WBC and WBO rank Valdez, who was destroyed by Stevenson in April, third. He will likely be in a position to compete for one of the open positions. If he chooses the WBO path, Top Rank has been interested in a bout with Emanuel Navarrete for some time.
Navarrete, a champion at featherweight, is expected to reach 130 pounds as soon as possible. He is just 5′ 7″ and seems to have no other good opponents who are also members of Top Rank.
The WBO would probably agree to his request because he now has the 126-pound championship of the organization if he wants to go up to junior lightweight for an instant title opportunity.
And even if it’s not for a vacant title, Valdez and Navarrete may face off in the not-too-distant future in an all-action fight between two Mexicans. The top-ranked boxer-puncher in the WBC rankings, O’Shaquie Foster, is expected to get his long-awaited championship fight.
Keyshawn Davis Keeps Improving
Davis has kept up his stellar performance in the professionals after winning silver at the Olympics last summer.
Davis (6-0, 5 KOs) was impressive in Friday’s ESPN co-feature, knocking out Omar Tienda (25-6, 18 KOs) in the fifth round. From the first bell, the 23-year-old from Norfolk, Virginia dazzled with his deft footwork and precise combo punches.
With Tienda trapped against the ropes, he landed a right hand to the temple and followed it up with a flurry of powerful blows, knocking out his opponent and forcing referee Albert Earl Brown to intervene.
Up to this point, Davis is as promising a boxing prospect as any other fighter. It’s reasonable to see him challenging for a championship in 2024, but the real test will come when he meets a gatekeeper.