Stevenson Responds to De La Hoya’s Offer for Zepeda Fight

By Dan Ambrose - 03/17/2024 - Comments

Golden Boy Promotions CEO Oscar De La Hoya challenged Shakur Stevenson, the WBC lightweight champion, to face William Zepeda next. Shakur responded to De La Hoya’s message on social media, offering Zepeda to fight him in July when he returns for his next title defense.

Zepeda will only have 3 1/2 months to prepare for Shakur if he accepts his offer to fight in July, which is not much time to prepare for the crafty, defensive artist.

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De La Hoya wants Zepeda to battle the unbeaten Stevenson (21-0, 10 KOs) for his belt next following the Mexican star’s fourth-round TKO win over Maxi Hughes (26-7-2, 5 KOs) last Saturday night

“I’m ready in July. Let’s make it happen. Hit my promoter, Oscar,” said Shakur Stevenson on X, responding to Golden Boy Promotions CEO Oscar De La Hoya’s request that he fight #1-ranked WBC lightweight contender William Zepeda next.

Oscar De La Hoya: “Hi Shakur Stevenson, this is William Zepeda.”

Bob Arum To Make the Call

Stevenson’s promoter, Bob Arum of Top Rank, will have the final call on whether he can face Zepeda next July. Shakur only has one fight left on his contract with Top Rank, and Arum likely wants to get the most value he can for that final match by matching him against one of his Top Rank fighters.

Conversely, Arum might not want to waste using one of his valuable Top Rank stars, like Vasily Lomachenko or Emanuel Navarrete, but he’s not confident that Stevenson will re-sign with his company.

My Two Cents

This writer wouldn’t if he were in Arum’s shoes. Why waste one of Top Rank’s talents against Shakur if he’s going to leave the company after his final fight and go sign with PBC, which is what he’s expected to do?

Looking at it from that angle, Arum should jump at the chance to let Stevenson fight Zepeda in July. If Shakur loses, it’s not a big deal to Arum because he’s no longer with Top Rank, and his value to PBC will be lessened.

Stevenson will be devalued as he leaves. Arum should let Shakur walk the plank and face the revenous, shark-like Zepeda. If he wins, he wins, but if he loses, no biggie.