Teofimo Lopez vs. Shakur Stevenson next? Arum wants this fight if no Lopez – Lomatchenko rematch
By Allan Fox: Bob Arum says he wants to put together a fight between Teofimo Lopez and Shakur Stevenson next if Teo continues to resist the idea of giving Vasily Lomachenko a rematch.
For the Teofimo-Stevenson fight to happen, Teofimo would need to agree to it, and it’s unknown if he will.
The undefeated two-division world champion Shakur (17-0, 9 KOs) has already shown the willingness to fight anybody, so he’ll likely agree 100% to a fight with Teofimo if offered to him by his Top Rank promoter Arum.
Will Teofimo agree to fight Shakur?
Getting Teofimo to agree to fight the 24-year-old ‘Fearless’ Stevenson may prove to be the hard thing for Arum because the New Yorker may resist the idea.
Teofimo’s resistance to giving Lomachenko (15-2, 11 KOs) a rematch after being the injured two-time Olympic gold medalist last October 2020 has given boxing fans the belief that he lacks the self-confidence to fight the Ukrainian again.
If Teofimo lacks the confidence to fight Lomachenko again, he may want no part of fighting a talented guy like Shakur.
Teofimo (16-0, 12 KOs) still needs to win his fight this month against George Kambosos Jr. on November 27th on DAZN at Madison Square Garden in New York. Teo, 24, will be defending his IBF, WBA & WBO lightweight titles against the unbeaten IBF mandatory Kambosos (19-0, 10 KOs).
“That would be the fight that should be made, but Teofimo has said that he WON’T fight Lomachenko again, and you can’t make a guy do it,” said Bob Arum to Fighthype when asked about setting up a rematch between Teofimo and Lomachenko next if Loma wins his December 11th fight against Commey.
Fans would want to see Teofimo vs. Stevenson
“So the fight I would like to do with Teofimo is with Shakur Stevenson,” Arum continued. “I don’t know, and that’s up to them. I haven’t talked to Shakur about it. That would be the fight that the public would want to see,” said Arum.
The U.S boxing public would much more prefer to see Teofimo fighting Shakur than seeing Teo move up to 140 to challenge undisputed light welterweight champion Josh Taylor.
It’s not that Taylor isn’t an excellent fighter, but he’s not from the United States and not as well known as Stevenson. Domestically, it works better for Top Rank if Teofimo faces Stevenson next rather than Taylor or WBC lightweight champion Devin Haney.
Matchroom Boxing promoter Eddie Hearn is keen on putting a fight together between Haney (26-0, 15 KOs) and Teofimo next, but it’s better for Teo and Top Rank if they make the match-up with Shakur Stevenson.
A fight between Teofimo and Shakur has more potential to bring in more significant numbers than a Teofimo-Haney fight, and also it would be on ESPN. Dealing with a cross-platform battle between Teofimo and the DAZN fighter Haney would complicate things.
With Arum chomping at the bit to make a Teofimo vs. Shakur fight, some boxing fans might get the impression that the Top Rank boss is feeding Teo to Stevenson because of the recent issues he dealt with in him forcing a purse bid for his non-marquee title defense against the little known Kambosos.
Teofimo-Stevenson will be a massive fight
That bumbling move on Teofimo ultimately cost him a year of his career, as Triller won the purse bid, but the Kambosos fight failed to happen. Arum wants to turn Teofimo and Stevenson into superstars, and the best way to achieve that goal is to fight each other.
On paper, Teofimo vs. Stevenson is a far better fight than Teofimo-Haney, which could prove to be a dull affair due to Devin’s boring style.
“Yeah, sure, that’s a huge fight, particularly with the Mexican Americans,” Arum said of WBC super featherweight champion Oscar Valdez defending against Emanuel Navarrete next.
“We’ll see, we’ll see, one step at a time. There’s a lot of good fighters and a lot of good fights that can be made,” said Arum.
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- Haney vs. Lomachenko: Devin in toughest fight of his career says Paulie Malignaggi