Shakur Stevenson calls out Navarrete: Eyes USA vs. Mexico clash for lightweight supremacy

By Dan Ambrose - 01/02/2024 - Comments

Shakur Stevenson says he wants to face Emanuel Navarrete next in a USA vs. Mexico fight, and he sees it as a big one that’ll attract a lot of interest.

Navarrete would have a chance to face one of his biggest career fights if he agrees to the match, as the only notable name on his twelve year resume is Oscar Valdez, and he’s old & past it when he got to him.

Will Shakur disappoint again?

Stevenson (21-0, 10 KOs) recently won the vacant WBC lightweight title with a close twelve round unanimous decision win over Edwin De Los Santos last November in a competitive bout in Las Vegas.

Interestingly, ESPN didn’t release a highlight video of the Stevenson vs. De Los Santos fight. Some boxing fans believe the reason for this is that it wouldn’t have made Shakur look good, especially with the booing. The comment section on the video would have been a disaster.

Rather than facing De Los Santos in a rematch to show the fans that he can perform better, Shakur wants to face Navarrete (38-1-1, 31 KOs) next.

Shakur, 26, says he was injured in this fight, and his promoter, Bob Arum, states that he had a shoulder & hang problem.

Defensive wizard vs. pressure master

The big punching 5’7″ Navarrete is known for his power, heavy pressure, and high-volume style of fighting. However, he’s never faced a defensive fighter with the kind of footwork that Shakur possesses, and he might have problems getting his shots off to land.

Navarrete struggled in his last fight against Robson Conceicao, winning a close, drama-filled twelve round majority decision last November. That was an opponent that stood in front of Navarrete, making it easy for him to get his shots off.

Shakur will probably be using his pull-back style nonstop against Navarrete, landing and then retreating laterally to keep from getting hit. It’s going to be difficult for Navarrete to get to Shakur if he chooses to move all night.

Can Stevenson sustain fan interest?

Hopefully, Shakur doesn’t do this because he was heavily booed for his fights with De Los Santos and Jeremiah Nakathilia. The boxing public bought into Shakur’s injury excuses for the De Los Santos fight, but they’re not going to buy if he runs all night against Navarrete and then says he was hurt.

If Shakur can’t get the Navarrete fight, Top Rank needs to match him against Raymond Muratalla or Keyshawn Davis because those would be interesting match-ups.

Shakur should move up to 140 because he’s more than big enough to fight in that weight class, and he could go after WBC champion Devin Haney, Subriel Matias, Teofimo Lopez, and Ryan Garcia.

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