Shakur Stevenson on Top Rank contract expiring in 2024: I’m considering every option

By Boxing News - 10/08/2023 - Comments

By Brian Webber: Shakur Stevenson says he’ll be a promotional free agent next year after his contract with Top Rank expires, and he says he’ll be “considering every option possible” for where he goes. It has to make “business” sense for Shakur.

Stevenson hasn’t given any hints about where he’ll go, but many fans believe he’ll sign with PBC, hoping that will put him in a better position to get the profitable fight that has eluded him against Gervonta Davis.

Shakur had to have noted that Ryan Garcia got $30 million for his fight with Tank Davis last April, so he likely believes that if he signs with PBC, he can get similar dough. Unfortunately, it’s not as simple as that.

Mayweather Promotions obviously saw Ryan as an easy mark, as he’s an influencer/boxer hybrid fighter, and he’d looking vulnerable his entire career, even against second-tier opposition.

They had to have seen the 11 million Instagram followers that Ryan had and wanted to take advantage of the situation to make easy money.

In contrast, Shakur has a pitiful 1 million Instagram followers, and he’s not an easy out. In fact, he’s a defensive fighter who is harder to hit and looks to win fights by outboxing his opponents.

What that means is Tank Davis won’t make big money fighting Shakur, and he’d have to chase him around the ring all night.

Tank might even lose to Shakur by a decision, and that wouldn’t be a good thing for his & Mayweather Promotions’ revenue streams.

Floyd & Leonard Ellerbe aren’t about to let Gervonta fight anybody who could mess up the money by putting him in with anyone with a pulse, especially a defensive fighter who uses the pull-back 24/7 in his fights like Shakur does.

They’re making money hand over fist right now without even having to match Gervonta against quality opposition, an it would be foolish to mess with that bank heist formula to put him in with Shakur or anyone that could potentially ruin the oil well that is pumping out money by the truckload.

Stevenson focused on business

“I’m considering every option possible. Let me make sure that’s known,” said Shakur Stevenson to Cigar Talk about whether he’ll stick with Top Rank when his contract expires in 2024.

“Top Rank’s good to me, but once my contract’s up, I will be a free agent, and I’m willing to talk to anybody that wants to do great business.

Interestingly, Shakur (20-0, 10 KOs) says he doesn’t care about money, which is a strange comment because what doesn’t jibe with his comment about his next destination will be a “business” decision.

That means money, right? If not, what is the 2016 Olympic silver medalist Stevenson talking about?

“Success is what I just saw from Bud. Mount Rushmore, being at the top of that mountain with the greats, and when I could finally solidify myself and say I will be a Hall of Famer, I will be a legend at the end of my career. I think that’s a success for me.

“Once I fight in the big, big, big fights or that big fight where I get my foot in the door and then take over and just keep taking over and nonstop dominate, that’s when I’m going be more so satisfied. That’s when I’ll be happy,” said Stevenson.

“I think it’s very frustrating,” said Shakur about his inability to get the best fights since turning pro in 2017. “I want to be in the best fight possible, which is why I went straight at Lomachenko after that fight [with Devin Haney last May].

“Y’all say he just beat Devin, so if he just beat Devin or had a good fight with Devin, let’s see how I match up against him.

“I had plenty of like training camps while I’m working with Bud or helping him out in whatever way I could, but honestly, that training camp felt a little different,” said Shakur about Terence Crawford’s camp to prepare for his fight with Errol Spence Jr. last July.

“I was going home from the sparring session sometimes, and my brain was hurting. I’m not saying my brain was hurting from getting hit. It was just thinking so much like when we were sparring.

“It was like a chess match. I’m thinking constantly over and over every day. ‘Okay, I’m having a harder time hitting him than I’m usually having a harder time hitting him, and honestly, that was some of the best rounds I feel like we had overall.

“It’s stuff I could do now, I couldn’t do then. I’m on a way higher level than I was years ago when I used to spar [Crawford]. That’s really the biggest difference, but honestly, with the Spence camp, I felt like he was on a whole different type of timing. I was watching him spar somebody else, and I’m like ‘S**,” said Stevenson.

Shakur doesn’t care about money

“Right now, I’m hungry, like I’m starving, and I’m not talking about money. This doesn’t have one thing to do with money. I don’t give a f**k about that at this point in my career,” said Shakur, not realizing that he sounded like a class-A hypocrite.

If Stevenson doesn’t care about money, why pray tell was all this junk about his next promotional landing spot needing to make business sense?

Is Shakur not talking about wanting to go to a promoter that pays him the most loot, or has the wherewithal to match him in the best financially fruitful fights?

Again, it’s likely that Shakur will sign with PBC when his contract with Top Rank is up, naively believing that joining up with them will give him the keys to the kingdom to get the economically gainful fight that he’s been salivating over against Tank Davis.

When the fight with Tank doesn’t happen, Shakur will be kicking himself for being short-sighted and failing to understand what Gervonta is all about and what he represents. Tank is the equivalent of the old Spindletop oil well for Mayweather Promotions, and they will never let him anywhere near Shakur until shot to pieces with just a few marbles rolling around in his head.

“This is more so the love of the sport of boxing that’s driving me and making me want to be one of the greatest. That’s my passion; that’s the goal that I want to achieve,” said Shakur.

“I want to be one of the greatest boxers ever to do it and put my name in the history books like Floyd Mayweather, Andre Ward, Pernell Whitaker, and Terence Crawford.  Them guys.

“Once I’m able to put myself in that history book, I’m going to be satisfied,” said Shakur.

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