Shakur Stevenson

Weightclass: Featherweight

  • 9wins

  • 0losses

  • 0draws

  • 5kos

AGE:
21
Birthplace:
Newark, New Jersey
Height:
5'8"
reach:
68"
Managers:
Andre Ward, James Prince, Josh Dubin
Trainers:
Wali Moses (Shakur’s grandfather), Kay Koroma

fighter feed

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Shakur Stevenson

Just 21 years old, Shakur is a one-year pro. A sensational young prospect at 126 pounds, he was one of the United States’ top amateur boxers in recent years – he fought at the elite international level and won the featherweight silver medal at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

As a professional, he is managed by his hero, Andre Ward, along with James Prince and Josh Dubin, and trained by his grandfather, Wali Moses, and Kay Koroma. Shakur is promoted by Top Rank Inc. and Antonio Leonard Productions.

Activity is very important for a developing young prospect, and Shakur has been very active with nine fights in his first 18 months as a pro.

In his last fight on October 13 in Omaha, Nebraska, Shakur stepped up to 10-round status – and in class of opposition – and won by first-round TKO against Viorel Simion.

ESPN.com’s Dan Rafael reported from ringside [excerpts]: Blue-chip featherweight prospect Shakur Stevenson has been asking for Top Rank to step up his competition. He got his wish and looked sensational at the CHI Health Center.

Stevenson scored three knockdowns in a spectacular first-round knockout performance against battle-tested veteran Viorel Simion in the co-feature of the Top Rank Boxing on ESPN card headlined by the Terence CrawfordJose Benavidez Jr. welterweight title fight.

The fight was Stevenson’s first scheduled for 10 rounds and he needed only a round to get rid of Simion. The 2004 Romanian Olympian simply could not deal with the speed and power of Stevenson’s right hook.

Stevenson took on Simion when original opponent Duarn Vue withdrew last week after suffering an eye injury, but he was considered an upgrade in opponent. Simion’s only losses had come by decision to former featherweight world titlist Lee Selby in 2013 and former junior featherweight world titleholder Scott Quigg in 2017, but Stevenson plowed through him.

Stevenson floored Simion with a right hook early on and he was badly hurt. Soon thereafter, Stevenson dropped him for the second time with a flurry of punches and then clobbered him again with a right hook to drop him yet again. Simion beat the count, but he was in rough shape, and [the] referee waved off the fight at 3 minutes of the first round. [End Rafael item]

In his post-fight interview, Shakur said, “My granddad [trainer Wali Moses] told me the right hook would be there, and I capitalized on it. I didn’t think it would be one round, I ain’t going to lie. But I saw the opening and I took it. I was accurate tonight. I put on a show and it’s going to get better and better. I did more than what I expected to.

“I told Top Rank to test me. They tested me. Now I’ll tell them I want better opponents. I feel I’m ready for top opposition.”

There’s always some degree of adjustment for a young fighter going from amateur to professional boxing – no headgear, although some amateur tournaments now have no-headgear matches; smaller gloves; day-before weigh-ins instead of weigh-ins the day of each fight; a judging system that values the effectiveness of punches as well as their number; and more rounds per fight that gradually increase as a young boxer progresses and matures.

In earlier interviews, Shakur said, “I feel like adapting to the pros has gone exactly the way I want it. I’ve been getting better and better in my last fights. If you look at my last three fights, I put on some amazing performances. Actually, in the amateurs I used to box with no headgear, so I was already used to that, but the smaller gloves are way different.

“I’ve been training in Alexandria, Virginia, since I was 17. I train at the Alexandria Boxing Club here, but Newark is my home town – that’s where I was born and raised. That’s my city.

“My style – I would say I’m a thinker and a performer. I’m a lot more of a boxer.

“I’ve been to a few training camps with pros. I was in Andre Ward’s training camp when he fought Sergey Kovalev. I was in Terence Crawford’s training camp helping him spar when he fought Viktor Postol – I did four four-minute rounds with Terence. If you listen to Terence after that fight, he shouts out, ‘Good luck to the Olympic team that was helping me in sparring – Shakur and everybody on the Olympic team.’ I also sparred with Gary Russell Jr.

“I met Andre Ward when I was younger. I think it was in May or June, 2015. He had a kid that was from our gym in Alexandria, Antoine Douglas, and I went down there. I was hanging out and watching every time he sparred and trained, but I was training there also. That was my first time meeting ‘Dre.”

AMATEUR, PERSONAL BACKGROUND: Shakur said, “I was born and raised in Newark, New Jersey. My mother’s got nine kids – there’s seven boys and two girls. I’m the only boxer in my family. My little brother used to box before, but he had a fight where he thought he got robbed and after he got robbed, he quit.

“I was five years old when I first started boxing. My grandfather, Wali Moses, he was a boxing coach. He used to play baseball, also. One day, he took me to a baseball game and some of his fighters came and he introduced me to them. The next day, I asked him if he would take me to the boxing gym. I felt like it was cool that they were boxers. So, he took me to the gym and the first time I went there, I just fell in love with boxing. I had my first fight when I was eight.

“I know I had around 140-something amateur fights. I had 12 losses, maybe 13.

“I’m naturally right-handed. When I started boxing, I was just more comfortable in the left-handed stance.”…

From nj.com [Aug. 14, 2016 – excerpts]: Shakur Stevenson was born and raised in Newark and still loves his home city. He’s named for the rapper – Stevenson was born nine months after rap star Tupac Shakur was gunned down. His mother, Malikah Stevenson, considered the musician her “poet” and always knew she would name a boy after him. He lived on Ali Blvd – That’s right, Stevenson and his family lived for a time on Muhammad Ali Blvd in Newark.

His role model is Andre Ward – Andre Ward is that most recent U.S. male boxer to win a gold medal, doing so at the 2004 Athens Games. Stevenson studied Ward and appreciated both his style in the ring and his approach outside of it.

Ward has become a mentor – Andre Ward has taken Stevenson under his wing, even giving him a pep talk before the Olympic trials. “I think he’s ahead of his time a little bit,” Ward said. “He understands his range. He understands who he is as a fighter. Shakur wants to fight in the biggest moments. I look at that and I’m impressed.”

He inspired his dad – Shahid Guyton said it was watching his son’s commitment to boxing that helped motivate him to “live out my dream” after some “trials and tribulations with the streets.” He earned his GED, got a job in behavioral health technology and getting a degree at a community college. “I told him, ‘You don’t know what kind of inspiration you are to me.’ ” [End nj.com item]

AMATEUR HIGHLIGHTS:

2016 OLYMPIC GAMES – Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 123 pounds – SILVER MEDALIST: in his first fight on 8-14-16 he won a 3-0 decision against Robenilson de Jesus of Brazil; in the quarterfinals on 8-16-16 he won a 3-0 decision against Erdenbaat Tsendbaatar of Mongolia; in the semifinals on 8-18-16 he won by walkover against Vladimir Nikitin of Russia; in the finals on 8-20-16 he lost a 2-1 decision against Robeisy Ramirez of Cuba…

The Associated Press’ Greg Beacham reported from ringside [excerpts]: Robeisy Ramirez and Shakur Stevenson are two of the top talents in the entire Olympic boxing tournament, and their bantamweight championship bout produced three rounds of tantalizing action.

When Ramirez’s hand was raised afterward, Cuba had another two-time gold medalist.

Stevenson left the ring in uncontrollable tears, but also with a silver medal and a bottomless source of motivation for his upcoming pro career.

Ramirez claimed a split decision over the American bantamweight, celebrating with a standing backflip in the ring after a remarkable run in Rio de Janeiro.

“He’s young, and he has big promise for boxing,” the 22-year-old Ramirez said. “It was hard to fight against him.”

Ramirez and Stevenson put on a high-level exhibition for the crowd at Riocentro Pavilion 6, showing off athleticism and sophisticated boxing skill for three perilous rounds.

Ramirez backed up his flyweight gold medal from the London Olympics by moving up in weight and winning perhaps the most talented division in the Rio Games.

Stevenson was distraught after the first loss of his international career. Coach Kay Koroma and the fighter’s family rallied around him for comfort, and Stevenson eventually gathered himself for the medal ceremony.

Stevenson was honest and sportsmanlike in defeat, saying he “definitely” didn’t think he won.

“First round, he got,” Stevenson said. “Second round, I got. Third round, he came and did what he was supposed to do. I had a game plan to try and outbox him the last round because I knew he was going to come forward. It didn’t work. I didn’t feel like it was my best performance.”

Ramirez was aggressive in the third round, particularly in the final minute. Stevenson landed a flurry at the bell, but two of the three judges awarded the third to Ramirez.

“Congratulations to him,” Stevenson said. “He had a better third round. But hopefully we get to meet down the line in the pros.” [End Beacham item]

2016 AMERICAS OLYMPIC QUALIFIER – Buenos Aires, Argentina, 123 pounds – GOLD MEDALIST: in his first fight on 3-13-16 he won a 2-1 decision against Luis Ruiz of Colombia; in the quarterfinals on 3-15-16 he stopped Mathias Bagnado of Uruguay in the 1st round; in the semifinals on 3-17-16 he won a 3-0 decision against José Diaz of Venezuela; in the finals on 3-19-16 he won a 3-0 decision against Alberto Melian of Argentina…

2016 WORLD SERIES OF BOXING – 123 pounds: on 1-21-16 in Miami, Florida, he won a 3-0 decision against Peter McGrail of England; on 2-19-16 in Casablanca, Morocco, he won a 3-0 decision against Mohamed Hamout of Morocco…

2016 U.S. OLYMPIC TRIALS – Reno, Nevada, 123 pounds/double elimination tournament – GOLD MEDALIST: in the quarterfinals (his first fight) on 12-7-15 he won a 3-0 decision against Mikhail Montgomery; in the Winners Bracket on 12-8-15 he won a 3-0 decision against Rubin Villa; in the Winners Bracket on 12-9-15 he won a 3-0 decision against Efren Lopez; in the finals on 12-12-15 he won a 3-0 decision against Rubin Villa

2015 U.S. OLYMPIC TRIALS QUALIFIER 2 – Baltimore, Maryland, 123 pounds – GOLD MEDALIST: in his first fight on 9-8-15 he won a 3-0 decision against Duke Ragan; in his second fight on 9-9-15 he won a 3-0 decision against Frank Gonzalez; in the quarterfinals on 9-10-15 he won a 3-0 decision against Efren Lopez; in the semifinals on 9-11-15 he won a 3-0 decision against Cristian Williams; in the finals on 9-12-15 he won a 3-0 decision against Mikhail Montgomery

2015 NATIONAL GOLDEN GLOVES CHAMPIONSHIPS – Las Vegas, Nevada, 123 pounds: in his first fight on 5-11-15 he won a 5-0 decision against Mikhail Montgomery; in his second fight on 5-13-15 he defeated Duke Ragan; in the quarterfinals on 5-14-15 he lost against Rubin Villa

2015 U.S. YOUTH NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS – Reno, Nevada, 123 pounds – GOLD MEDALIST: in his first fight on 1-5-15 he stopped Fabien Canales in the 2nd round; in his second fight on 1-6-15 he won a 3-0 decision against Daniel Gonzales; in the quarterfinals on 1-7-15 he won a 3-0 decision against Edward Ceballos; in the semifinals on 1-8-15 he won a 3-0 decision against Victor Morales Jr.; in the finals on 1-9-15 he won a 2-1 decision against Duke Ragan

2014 YOUTH OLYMPIC GAMES – Nanjing, People’s Republic of China, 115 pounds – GOLD MEDALIST: in the quarterfinals (his first fight) on 8-23-14 he won a 3-0 decision against Daniel Asenov of Bulgaria; in the semifinals on 8-24-14 he won a 3-0 decision against Muhammed Ali of England; in the finals on 8-27-14 he won a 3-0 decision against Lu Ping of China…

2014 RINGSIDE WORLD TOURNAMENT – Kansas City, Missouri, 123 pounds/youth division – GOLD MEDALIST: in the quarterfinals (his first fight) on 7-31-14 he defeated Jorge Munoz of the United States; in the semifinals on 8-1-14 he defeated Daniel Bailey of the United States; in the finals on 8-2-14 he defeated Eric Estrada of the United States…

2014 YOUTH WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS – Sofia, Bulgaria, 115 pounds – GOLD MEDALIST: in his first fight on 4-17-14 he won a 3-0 decision against Juan Camacho of Puerto Rico; in his second fight on 4-20-14 he won a 3-0 decision against Khursant Imankuliev of Turkey; in the quarterfinals on 4-21-14 he won a 3-0 decision against Carlos Silva of Brazil; in the semifinals on 4-23-14 he won a 3-0 decision against Lu Ping of China; in the finals on 4-24-14 he won a 3-0 decision against Muhammad Ali of England…

2013 WORLD JUNIOR CHAMPIONSHIPS – Kiev, Ukraine, 115 pounds – GOLD MEDALIST: in his first fight on 9-10-13 he won a 3-0 decision against Bakhodur Usmonov of Tajikistan; in his second fight on 9-11-13 he won a 3-0 decision against Aytal Dyakonov of Russia; in the quarterfinals on 9-12-13 he won a 3-0 decision against Valeri Bokoveli of Republic of Georgia; in the semifinals on 9-14-13 he won a 3-0 decision against Baurzhan Temirkhan of Kazakhstan; in the finals on 9-15-13 he won a 3-0 decision against Ruslan Zubachuk of Ukraine…

2013 U.S. JUNIOR NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS – Mobile, Alabama, 115 pounds – GOLD MEDALIST: in the quarterfinals (his first fight) on 6-27-13 he won a 3-0 decision against Marco Diaz; in the semifinals on 6-28-13 he won a 3-0 decision against Victor Morales Jr.; in the finals on 6-29-13 he won a 3-0 decision against Darren Cunningham

2013 UMAN LIBERATION JUNIOR TOURNAMENT – Uman, Ukraine, 115 pounds – GOLD MEDALIST: in the quarterfinals (his first fight) on 5-10-13 he won a 3-0 decision against Andriy Klembovskiy of Ukraine; in the semifinals on 5-11-13 he won a 3-0 decision against Yaroslav Pishchik of Ukraine; in the finals on 5-12-13 he stopped Olexandr Babiy of Ukraine…

2012 VELES CUP – Kurgan, Russia, 110 pounds/series of duals: in his first fight on 7-17-12 he won a 9-5 decision against Colm Molloy of Ireland; in his second fight on 7-19-12 he won a 9-3 decision against Andrey Chupchuk of Russia; in his third fight on 7-20-12 he won by walkover against Simon Neubauer of Germany; in his fourth fight on 7-21-12 he won a 12-1 decision against Maksim Mayakovskiy of Russia…

STRENGTHS: A left-hander with good skills, speed, and movement…has good punching power…had a very strong amateur background…has a strong family boxing background…

PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE: 9 fights…36 total rounds…

AVERAGE LENGTH OF BOUTS: 4 rounds…

KNOCKOUT PERCENTAGE: 55 %…

DISTANCE FIGHTS: 8 rounds – 2 (2-0)…6 rounds – 2 (2-0)…

fight history

  • 2018

    In his last fight on 10-13-18 in Omaha, NB, he won by TKO (1st round) against 2004 Romanian Olympian Viorel Simion (21-1): the scheduled 10-rounder – Shakur’s first – was co-featured with the Terence Crawford vs. Jose Benavidez Jr. main event and ended with a spectacular knockout; Shakur scored three knockdowns  in the 1st round – the first with a right hook, the second with a series of punches, and the third with a right hook; Simion got up every time but was very unsteady after the third knockdown and the referee stopped the fight at 3:00…

    On 8-18-18 in Atlantic City, NJ, he won an 8 round unanimous decision against Carlos Ruiz (16-4-2): the bout was on the undercard of the Bryant Jennings vs. Alexander Dimitrenko main event; Ruiz constantly pressed forward and gave a determined effort, but Shakur kept him off-balance with movement and consistently out-boxed and out-worked him; scored 80-72 on all three scorecards…

    On 6-9-18 in Las Vegas, NV, he won by TKO (2nd round) against Aelio Mesquita (16-1): the scheduled 8-rounder was on the undercard of the Terence Crawford vs. Jeff Horn main event, and Shakur quickly overpowered him; he scored two knockdowns in the 1st round, the first with a left hand-right hook-left hand combination, the second with a left hand; he scored two knockdowns with left hands early in the 2nd, but was penalized one point for hitting Mesquita when he was on the canvas after the second knockdown – Mesquita got up, but Shakur scored another knockdown with a left hand moments later, Mesquita’s corner threw in the towel, and the referee stopped the fight at 1:45.

    On 4-28-18 in Philadelphia, PA, he won by TKO (2nd round) against previously undefeated Patrick Riley (12-0): the scheduled 8-rounder was on the undercard of the Isaac Dogboe vs. Jessie Magdaleno main event; Shakur scored a knockdown with a left hand in the 2nd round – Riley got up, but Shakur rocked him with a series of punches and the referee stopped the fight at 1:35.

    On 2-16-18 in Reno, NV, he won an 8 round unanimous decision against Johnny “Blaze” Tapia (8-1): the bout was on the undercard of the Ray Beltran vs. Paulus Moses main event, and Shakur dominated the fight; he consistently out-boxed and out-worked Tapia, and landed the sharper punches; scored 80-72 on all three scorecards.

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  • 2017

    On 12-9-17 in New York, NY, he won by TKO (2nd round) against Oscar Mendoza (4-2): the scheduled 6-rounder was one of the co-features with the Vasily Lomachenko vs. Guillermo Rigondeaux main event, and Shakur quickly overwhelmed him; he rocked Mendoza repeatedly in the 1st round, then rocked him with a series of punches in the 2nd and the referee stopped the fight at 1:38.

    On 8-19-17 in Omaha, NB, he won a 6 round unanimous decision against David Paz (4-3-1): the bout was on the undercard of the Terence Crawford vs. Julius Indongo main event; Paz gave a determined effort, but Shakur consistently out-boxed and out-worked him, landed the sharper punches, and dominated the fight; Shakur punched out Paz’ mouthpiece in the 5th round, and scored a knockdown with a left hook moments later; scored 60-53 on all three scorecards.

    On 5-20-17 in New York he won by TKO (1st round) against Carlos Suarez (6-3-2): the scheduled 6-rounder was on the undercard of the Terence Crawford vs. Felix Diaz main event at Madison Square Garden, and Shakur quickly overpowered him; he pressed forward, rocked Suarez repeatedly, then scored a knockdown with a series of punches late in 1st round and the referee stopped the fight without a count at 2:35.

    He made his debut at the age of 19 on 4-22-17 in Carson, CA, and won by technical decision (6th round) against Edgar Brito 3-2-1): the scheduled 6-rounder was a special attraction on a triple world championship card; Brito gave a determined effort, but Shakur consistently out-boxed and out-worked him, and dominated the fight; Brito was cut over his left eye by an accidental clash of heads in the 2nd round, and was cut over his right eye in the 3rd – it was ruled an intentional headbutt, and Brito was penalized one point; the 6th round started, but the referee stopped the fight on Brito’s cuts on the recommendation cof the ringside doctor at 0:01 and the fight went to the scorecards – Shakur led by scores of 60-53 on all three scorecards.

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