LAS VEGAS – It was once no surprise when Oscar Valdez defeated Miguel Berchelt to seize the WBC Super Featherweight Championship on the MGM Grand on February 20. Eventually, Valdez was once getting into the combat 28–0 and were the featherweight champion ahead of gaining weight.
What was once astonishing was once the suave manner that Valdez knocked out Berchelt, who was once meant to be a larger and more potent guy, out of the chilly.
That victory opened the eyes of an excessively onlooker at ringside. Former featherweight champion, Shakur Stevenson, got here to look at, hoping to compete in opposition to the winner.
He got here way over inspired.
“Very much,” mentioned Stevenson.
And so, in conventional Stevenson style, he desires the fellow who poses essentially the most danger to him. He will combat Jeremiah Nakatilla for the intervening time WBO Super Featherweight belt on the Virgin Hotel on Saturday. If Stevenson wins, which he is a big -5000 favourite to do at BetMGM, he’ll face common WBO Champion Jermel Herring for the name.
But Stevenson would favor to skip Herring and move immediately to Valdez as a result of he may post the most important conceivable combat in his department.
“It’s a big test for me and a big test for Valdez,” Stevenson advised Yahoo Sports. “That’s what makes boxing good. Fighting like this will put boxing back on the map. That’s what’s going to happen next.”
Stevenson is a prolific general skill who, early in his building, is already one of the most highest pound-for-pound opponents on the earth. He’s ranked No. 9 on Yahoo Sports’ listing of the ten highest, and he is the kind of skill that may get to No. 1 after which keep there for a very long time.
Arum: Stevenson’s urge for food is like that of boxing legends like Mayweather
Top Rank founder Bob Arum has been obsessive about Stevenson since ahead of the 2016 Olympics, the place he gained a silver medal in Rio de Janeiro.
“I saw his talent a long time ago, not that it was a talent,” Arum advised Yahoo Sports. “He was different from any recent fighter, even Teofimo” [Lopez], as nice as he has been. Shakur has an innate talent to keep an eye on what is going on in that ring.
“She’s so talented and No. 2, she just has a lot of confidence in herself. A lot of kids have potential, but they don’t have the confidence when it’s really hard that they can get up. This kid is so confident And when you combine that with his talent, it’s a really cool product.”
As Arum discusses Stevenson’s building, he has no longer stopped to affiliate him with the various pound-per-pound greats Top Rank has fostered all over its lengthy and wonderful historical past.
Stevenson shared a trait, Arum mentioned, with stalwarts like Floyd Mayweather, Manny Pacquiao and Oscar De La Hoya, that might give him the chance to make a long-lasting affect at the sport.
Mayweather at all times mentioned that he would by no means “duck or dodge” someone, and this can be a stance that Stevenson has taken.
“Great people, really special, great top-level talent, people like Floyd, like Oscar, like Manny, never had a rival that was a problem,” Arum mentioned. “They wanted the biggest and coolest names. The problem with all of them, but especially with this kid, is that you have to rein in them.
“It’s like a horse, you must rein him once in a while. This child believes he can do the rest and he desires to do all of it now, and we occasionally have to drag the reins again and let him Must be informed that this can be a procedure.”
But Stevenson is in a bunch of elite younger opponents like Lopez, Devin Haney and others who’re pushing the envelope and looking to make the most important fights conceivable.
They do not at all times achieve getting them accomplished, however the extra they bang at the door, the earlier they’re going to crash thru it.
“It’s definitely a requirement,” Stevenson mentioned of the most productive opponents dealing with every different regularly. “I think boxing is going to come back and it’s going to come back through us young fighters like me, Teo, Devin, Tank. [Davis]milf ryan [Garcia]. You got Keishon Davis on the way. I think we are all going to bring boxing back.
“We’ve were given to combat every different. We’ve were given to have a large combat. We’ve were given to get within the ring and feature giant fights like me and Valdez, Tank vs Teo or Devin vs Teo or Ryan vs a kind of. That’s what will deliver boxing again now.” It’s our time now. We need to take care of the game and I feel it’ll be a perfect technology.
More from Yahoo Sports: