Shakur Stevenson is coming home!

Newark native and unified 130-pound champion(WBC/WBO) Shakur Stevenson is going home, but this time, he’s a champion. He will defend his titles on September 23 against Robson Conceição at Prudential Center in Newark.

The 25-year-old last fought at the Prudential Center in 2019 when he stopped Alberto Guevara.

The homecoming festivities kicked off Monday with a press conference at Prudential Center, and Stevenson was treated to a local hero’s welcome. Special guests included Seton Hall Men’s Basketball Coach Shaheen Holloway, Devils defenseman Dougie Hamilton, and Ras Baraka, Mayor of Newark.

Stevenson-Conceição and the return of lightweight U.S. Olympic silver medalist Keyshawn Davis will be broadcast on ESPN, ESPN Deportes and ESPN+ at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT. Undercard action will stream on ESPN+ and includes welterweight Jahi Tucker, featherweight Bruce “Shu Shu” Carrington, and junior bantamweight Floyd “Cashflow” Diaz.

Here is what the fighters had to say at the press conference.

Shakur Stevenson:

(Photo by Mikey Williams/Top Rank Inc via Getty Images) 

“For all the kids, you’ve got to keep trying to be great. Keep striving to be better. I want to be an example for you all. I want to make sure that I do my part. I’m going to come in shape and ready to fight on September 23. I’m going to put on a show for the kids, and for the city of Newark. I want to give you all a hell of a performance. I’m going to do my part, and I’m going to come in shape. I appreciate the support. I’m locked in, and September 23, I’m going to put on a show.”

Keyshawn Davis

(Photo by Mikey Williams/Top Rank Inc via Getty Images)

“I feel like Top Rank has the best prospects in the game. This is definitely one of the cards to watch. I feel like this is going to be another ‘Oscar Valdez’ type of a night. I feel like this is going to be another Shakur Stevenson vs. Jamel Herring fight. I feel like fight is going to be about six rounds right here. But not only the main event. I feel like the undercard is going to put on a spectacular performance, too. I don’t really see any of us going the entire rounds because I feel like we should be getting stoppage that night. As for me, the business man is going to do what he do. I’ve been putting on great performances ever since ya’ll been seeing me fight.”

Bruce Carrington

(Photo by Mikey Williams/Top Rank Inc via Getty Images)

“I know you will all be in the building on September 23. You know I’m bringing my people on September 23. We’re going to put on a show. A big shout out to all the boxers here. Floyd ‘Cashflow’ Diaz is in the building. ‘Flashy’ Keyshawn Davis is in the building. We’ve got Jahi Tucker. He’s in the building. And then you’ve got the man himself, Shakur Stevenson from Newark, New Jersey. He’s going to put on a show. And you know me as well, I’m going to put on a show, too. I’ll see you on September 23.”

Jahi Tucker

(Photo by Mikey Williams/Top Rank Inc via Getty Images)

“On September 23, I’ll have a good performance for you all. It’s my first time fighting in Jersey. I’m going to make it a memorable one. Shakur is a great fighter. This is his hometown, so I’ve got to come strong. I’m going to be here September 23, and I’ll see you all.”

Floyd Diaz

“I just want to make sure I put on a show for everybody. I want to show everybody that I’m scary at 122. And it is what it is. On September 23, me and my guys are going to put on a show. We’re here to take over.”

Stevenson: ‘I said I’m gonna beat Valdez, Canelo, and Eddy Reynoso’

WBO junior lightweight world champion Shakur Stevenson outboxed and dominated WBC champion Oscar Valdez, via unanimous decision (118-109 2x and 117-110) Saturday evening in from of 10,102 fans at the MGM Grand Garden Arena.

Stevenson earned the Ring Magazine title and status as the division’s top dog with the win.

It looked easy for Stevenson (18-0, 9 KOs) as he used the jab early, and Valdez (30-1, 23 KOs) could not get his offense going outside of pockets of success in the third round. In the sixth, Stevenson spun Valdez into the ropes and knocked him down with a right hand.

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – APRIL 30: Shakur Stevenson (L) and Oscar Valdez (R) exchange punches during their WBC and WBO junior lightweight championship at MGM Grand Garden Arena on April 30, 2022 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Mikey Williams/Top Rank Inc via Getty Images)

It was all Stevenson in the second half of the fight who built an insurmountable lead on the cards. Valdez won the 12th round on all three judges’ cards, but it was too little, too late. Stevenson asserted his dominance and is now the 130-pound king.

“This victory means everything,” Stevenson said. “I told ya’ll what I was going to do. I said I’m gonna beat Valdez, Canelo, and Eddy Reynoso, so that was my game plan, beat the whole team, and I feel good about it. Much respect to them, but that was my game plan.

“I want to collect all the belts at 130 and become undisputed. I deserve to be a superstar, so that’s what I gotta do.”

“He did what he had to do to win the fight,” Valdez said. “He’s a great fighter. His speed is there. Power is there. He was just the better fighter tonight. Overall, a great fighter.”

Stevenson had no issues with Valdez. He just wins rounds and takes no punishment. Sound familiar? That’s what the great Floyd Mayweather did throughout his career. Stevenson is exceptional, and at this point, there are not many fighters you would favor against him.

Davis Knocks out Sanchez

The future of the lightweight division, Olympic silver medalist Keyshawn Davis, battered Mexican veteran Esteban Sanchez (18-2, 8 KOs) en route to sixth-round TKO in the co-feature. Sanchez provided some resistance, but Davis (5-0, 4 KOs) wore down his foe round by round. He landed 56.8 percent of his power shots, including 34 of 53 in the sixth round.

Davis said, “He’s a great fighter, and I didn’t realize that until the first round. I said, ‘Whoa, he can fight!’ I knew I had to snap into a different Keyshawn. He’s a great fighter, a real respectful fighter. Hat’s off to Esteban Sanchez. Thank you for this opportunity. We should see a lot of Esteban Sanchez in the future.

“I just kept staying steady, staying with my rhythm. My coach, {Brian McIntyre}, kept telling me to go the body. I was trying to stab him a lot in the rounds, and honestly, I was just picking up round after round. I loved this fight because it challenged me. I felt challenged in the ring. I was happy I got a great performance and the stoppage.”

Ali Walsh Destroys Ibarra

The youngster with the famous last name, middleweight prospect Nico Ali Walsh, ignited the MGM Grand with a brutal first-round knockout over Alejandro Ibarra (7-2, 2 KOs). Ali Walsh (5-0, 4 KOs), the grandson of The Greatest, ended matters with a sweeping right hand.

Ali Walsh said, “I was setting him up with the right hand. I noticed his left hand was going down when he threw the jab. I was trying to counter it, and that’s what I did. I wish the best for him and his team. He’s a true warrior. But I just waited for that setup, and I saw it and I took advantage.”

Lightweight: Raymond Muratalla (14-0, 12 KOs) KO 3 Jeremy Hill (16-3, 11 KOs), 2:23. Enter the danger zone. “Danger” Muratalla became the first man to stop New Orleans native Hill, finishing the fight with a crunching right hand.

Junior Lightweight: Andres Cortes (17-0, 10 KOs) KO 6 Alexis del Bosque (18-6-1, 9 KOs). Cortes, a Las Vegas, native, put on a show for the hometown fans, knocking down Cortes twice in a brutal power punching display. A three-punch combination dropped del Bosque in the sixth. After rising to his feet gingerly, the fight was halted.

Middleweight: Troy Isley (5-0, 3 KOs) TKO 2 Anthony Hannah (3-3, 2 KOs). U.S. Olympian Isley savaged Hannah with body blows, putting his overmatched foe down for the count with a right hand to the gut. Earlier in the second, he knocked down Hannah with a left hook to the body.

Lightweight: Abdullah Mason (2-0, 2 KOs) TKO 1 Luciano Ramos (1-3), 2:32. The 18-year-old Mason, from Cleveland, Ohio, showed why he is one of the sport’s young prodigies with a first-round blitzing of Argentina’s Ramos. Referee Tony Weeks stopped the carnage after an assortment of lefts and rights left Ramos defenseless.

Welterweight: Jaylan Phillips (1-2-1, 1 KO) DRAW 4 Antoine Cobb (1-0-1, 1 KO). Scores: 39-37 Phillips and 38-38 2x. Phillips spoiled the spotless record of Cobb with a determined effort, sweeping the last the two rounds on the judges’ cards to earn a draw.

Sharp predicts winner of Valdez-Stevenson

Archie Sharp says he has the game-plan to cause Shakur Stevenson problems and believes the American is worried about fighting him.

Sharp is backing Stevenson to become unified super-featherweight champion this weekend when he faces Oscar Valdez in Las Vegas – and ‘Sharpshooter’ wants to be his next opponent.

Stevenson is the WBO title holder and Sharp has been breathing down his neck, as the No1 ranked contender with the sanctioning body, since November.

The Essex fighter admits he faces a “crucial” period in his career to turn his lofty rating with the WBO into the position of mandatory challenger for Stevenson.

“A lot of people are running away from Stevenson and for good reason, he’s a very good fighter and people are saying he’s the next big thing, but everyone who has fought him has come in with the same game-plan,” said the unbeaten Sharp.

“He is wary of me because I am so unorthodox and that would cause him problems.  Other people are running away from him but I’m heading directly at him – I want that fight.

“But I need to get myself into the mandatory position with the WBO and so I have to be in good fights.  If I have to wait for Stevenson, then get me someone who is at world level.

“This is a crucial time for me because I need to keep my number one ranking with the WBO and I can’t afford to lose that spot.”

Sharp says WBC champion Valdez runs the risk of playing straight into Stevenson’s hands on Saturday night.

“I’m interested to see how Stevenson deals with the pressure if that’s the way Valdez fights,” added Sharp.

“He knows he can’t rush Stevenson because he is such a good counter-puncher.  I believe Stevenson will win but it is going to be so interesting if Valdez turns it into a dog fight.

“I’m a completely different fighter to Valdez so my tactics against Stevenson wouldn’t be to do that and Valdez must know that if you stand still in front of him, he will pick you off.”

Sharp has also mentioned the possibility of taking on fellow Probellum fighter O’Shaquie Foster, who won a WBC eliminator in Dubai, last month.

Shakur Stevenson: ‘I am the best 130-pound fighter in the world’

Two world title belts and a combined record of 47-0. The battle for junior lightweight supremacy, is almost here. WBC champion Oscar Valdez (30-0, 23 KOs) will battle WBO king Shakur Stevenson (17-0, 9 KOs) this Saturday, April 30, at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.
 
The bitter rivals will compete to become the division’s first unified champion since 2005, and the winner will become the first Ring Magazine junior lightweight champion since Manny Pacquiao in 2008. Valdez, from Nogales, Mexico, is a two-division world champion who defended his WBO featherweight crown on the same night Stevenson turned pro in April 2017. Stevenson, also a two-division king, is coming off a title-winning knockout victory over Jamel “Semper Fi” Herring.
 
Valdez-Stevenson, an eight-round lightweight co-feature between U.S. Olympic silver medalist Keyshawn Davis and Esteban Sanchez, and the four-round Nico Ali Walsh-Alejandro Ibarra middleweight special attraction will be broadcast live on ESPN, ESPN Deportes, and ESPN+ at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT.
 
Four days from fight night, this is what Valdez and Stevenson had to say.

Shakur Stevenson:


 
“We are back in Las Vegas for training camp, and everything is going great. My grandfather and my team have me looking and feeling super sharp, and everyone is going to see the results of all this hard work on April 30.”
 
Getting the fight against Valdez
 
“This fight is three years in the making. Everyone knows that I’ve wanted to fight Oscar Valdez since 2019 when he vacated his belt at 126 instead of fighting me. He avoided me for as long as he could, but now is the perfect time for this fight and the fans are in for a show when we finally step into the ring.”
 
Unifying Titles
 
“I am the best 130-pound fighter in the world, and I will prove it when I beat Oscar Valdez and become unified champion. I won’t stop there, though. I want to become an undisputed champion at 130, and beating Oscar Valdez is the next step.”

 
Oscar Valdez:


 
“Even though I had a very tough challenge against Miguel Berchelt, this is the toughest and biggest fight of my career because Shakur has been talking for quite some time. Here we go again. The odds are against me, and everyone thinks that he will walk all over me, but just like against Berchelt, I will use that as motivation. I know I have a tough fight in front of me, but this is not something that I haven’t done before. I have worked very hard in the gym, and as always, I’m going to give it my best and leave it all in the ring. Like we say in Mexico, I’m willing to die on the line just to win. That’s all that matters to me.” 
 
“He is the type of fighter that talks a lot and is always running his mouth on social media, but I’m not like that. I let my fists do the talking. He is the type of fighter that is not willing to go to war. I’m the type of fighter that always wants to give the fans what they want. Since he is not willing to give the fans what they want, this will be more of a chess match. It will be a more technical fight. The smartest fighter inside the ring will win. For this kind of challenge, I prepared myself very well physically, but more importantly mentally.”
 
“Ever since I was a kid, I have dreamed of being the main event at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. It just sounds beautiful. Sounds like you made it. This is the major leagues. I’m very excited. I’m enjoying every moment. I’m enjoying this journey of greatness. When I win this fight, I will be one step closer to being on the pound-for-pound list, and more importantly, I will be a step closer to accomplishing my dream of being considered one of the best fighters in Mexican boxing history. I want my name to be among all these great Mexican fighters, like Morales, Barrera, Marquez, and Chavez. For that to happen, I need to win this fight.”

Photo/Courtesy: Mikey Williams/Top Rank

Nico Ali Walsh added to Valdez-Stevenson undercard

Las Vegas native Nico Ali Walsh, grandson of “The Greatest,” hopes to make a statement for the hometown fans. Ali Walsh will fight Denver’s Alejandro Ibarra in a four-round middleweight attraction Saturday, April 30, at the MGM Grand Garden Arena.

Ali Walsh-Ibarra will open the televised broadcast featuring the world junior lightweight title unification showdown between WBC champion Oscar Valdez and WBO king Shakur Stevenson.
 
Valdez-Stevenson, an eight-round lightweight co-feature between U.S. Olympic silver medalist Keyshawn Davis and Esteban Sanchez, and Ali Walsh-Ibarra will be broadcast live on ESPN, ESPN Deportes, and ESPN+ at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT.

Ali Walsh said, “Las Vegas is home, and the MGM Grand Garden Arena has hosted so many legendary fights. This is a dream come true. I’ve gotten to know Oscar and Shakur, and it’s an honor to fight on their card. I’m focused on my fight, as Ibarra is a capable veteran. He wants to be the guy to knock off Muhammad Ali’s grandson. I won’t let that happen, especially in front of my family and friends.”

Ali Walsh (4-0, 3 KOs) graduated from Las Vegas’ Bishop Gorman High School and is currently a student at UNLV, where he is on track to graduate later this month with a degree in business entrepreneurship. He turned pro last August with a headline-grabbing first-round knockout. Ali Walsh fought twice more in 2021, including a four-round decision over Reyes Sanchez at Madison Square Garden, the site of many of his grandfather’s most memorable ring battles. Ali Walsh last fought in January in Tulsa, Oklahoma, where he knocked out Jeremiah Yaegar in two rounds. He now turns to Ibarra (7-1, 2 KOs), a 28-year-old who has won four straight since the lone loss on his ledger.

Keyshawn Davis to battle Esteban Sánchez on Valdez-Stevenson undercard

 Lightweight Keyshawn Davis, the 23-year-old Olympic silver medal superstar from Norfolk, Virginia, is coming to Las Vegas on Pro Football Draft weekend to show why he should be the boxing world’s top draft pick. Davis will battle Mexican veteran Esteban Sánchez in an eight-rounder Saturday, April 30 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena.
 
Davis-Sanchez will be the co-feature to the junior lightweight title unification showdown between WBC champion Oscar Valdez and WBO king Shakur Stevenson.
 
Valdez-Stevenson and Davis-Sánchez will be televised live on ESPN, ESPN Deportes and ESPN+ at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT. Undercard bouts will be announced shortly.
 
“Keyshawn Davis was the most sought-after free agent coming out of the Tokyo Olympics, and he is among the sport’s most gifted fighters,” said Top Rank chairman Bob Arum. “The main event features two of the world’s best fighters in Valdez and Stevenson, and I have little doubt that Keyshawn is on his way to becoming a pound-for-pound great.”
 
Davis said, “Fighting in Las Vegas at MGM Grand on Pro Football Draft weekend… I was born for this stage. I am going to put on another flawless performance and then watch from ringside as my brother, Shakur, puts on a show as well. The stars will be out, and they are going to see something special.”
 
Davis (4-0, 3 KOs) was supposed to fight Sanchez on March 19 in New York, but he contracted a non-COVID-related virus. He knocked out Jose Zaragoza in two brutal rounds in his Top Rank on ESPN debut last December. Davis made an impression against Zaragoza, folding his overmatched foe with a left hook to the body. His slightly delayed return comes against Sánchez (18-1, 8 KOs) a native of Ensenada, Mexico, who won a pair of fights in 2021 following his only career loss.

Stevenson on bout with Valdez: ‘I have been chasing this fight for nearly three years’

WBC champion Oscar Valdez hopes to become a Mexican boxing legend while WBO king Shakur Stevenson is eyeing the mythical pound-for-pound rankings. On Saturday, April 30, Valdez and Stevenson, the world’s two best junior lightweights, will meet in a title unification matchup for the ages at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.

Stevenson and Valdez are vying to become the first unified junior lightweight champion since Mexican legend Marco Antonio Barrera in 2005.

Stevenson-Valdez, along with additional to be announced fight action, will be televised live on ESPN & ESPN Deportes (simulcast on ESPN+) at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT.

Promoted by Top Rank, ticket information will be announced shortly.

“Oscar Valdez and Shakur Stevenson are the world’s best junior lightweights. The fans and the fighters demanded this matchup, and we are proud to deliver it live on ESPN for no extra charge,” said Top Rank chairman Bob Arum. “The winner becomes a superstar, and I know both men will rise to challenge.”

Valdez (30-0, 23 KOs), the fighting pride of Nogales, Mexico, is closing in on an undefeated decade as a pro after Olympic appearances in 2008 and 2012. He is 9-0 in world title fights and has solidified his standing as one of Mexico’s consummate ring warriors. His 2017 featherweight title defenses against Miguel Marriaga and Genesis Servania were Fight of the Year contenders. In March 2018, he defeated an over-the-weight Scott Quigg despite fighting with a broken jaw for seven rounds. Valdez is 4-0 since moving up to junior lightweight, winning the WBC title with the 2021 Knockout of the Year over Miguel Berchelt. Last September, he made his first defense of that title, coming on strong in the later rounds to edge Robson Conceição by unanimous decision.

“I want to make it clear that I am the best 130-pound fighter in the world,” Valdez said. “We know Shakur Stevenson is very good at fighting, but he’s even better at social media. I’ll let my fists speak for themselves.”

Stevenson (17-0, 9 KOs), the pound-for-pound talent from Newark, New Jersey, won the vacant WBO featherweight world title against Joet Gonzalez in 2019 after Valdez vacated the title to campaign at junior lightweight. Stevenson moved up in weight after dominating Gonzalez, winning three fights before challenging WBO junior lightweight world champion Jamel “Semper Fi” Herring last October in Atlanta. Stevenson stopped Herring in the 10th round to become a two-weight world champion.

As the toast of the U.S. amateur boxing scene, Stevenson was pegged for superstardom ever since making his pro debut in April 2017. Through 17 pro bouts, he’s flashed a defensive riddle that has thus far been impossible for opponents to solve. It is a battle of youth versus hardened experience, as Valdez won his first world title in July 2016, four weeks before Stevenson earned a silver medal at the Rio Olympics.

Stevenson said, “I have been chasing this fight for nearly three years since we were both at featherweight. On April 30, I’m going to show him and the world why he ducked me all this time. I’m the best young fighter in the world, and I will become unified champion.”

Stevenson on fight with Herring: ‘You’re going to see a special night, my coming out party’

They started as acquaintances, but once Jamel Herring acquired the belt Shakur Stevenson wanted, the friendly vibes went out the window. Herring will defend his WBO junior lightweight world title against former featherweight champion Stevenson on Saturday night from State Farm Arena in Atlanta (ESPN, ESPN Deportes & ESPN+, 10:30 p.m. ET).

Herring (23-2, 11 KOs) has made three defenses of the title he won from Masayuki Ito in May 2019. Stevenson (16-0, 8 KOs), a 2016 Olympic silver medalist, is considered by many to be the heir to the pound-for-pound throne. He picked up the interim world title in June with a dominant decision over Jeremiah Nakathila.

When Herring and Stevenson had their final faceoff, the fighters and their teams exchanged verbal barbs, with Stevenson grabbing Herring’s belt on multiple occasions. They were separated and will resume the jawing at Friday’s weigh-in.

The ESPN main card will also feature Puerto Rican star Xander Zayas (10-0, 7 KOs) in a six-round junior middleweight bout against Dan Karpency, and the second pro bout for middleweight Nico Ali Walsh, grandson of “The Greatest.”

The ESPN+ undercard stream (7:30 p.m. ET) will showcase junior middleweight prospect Evan Holyfield (7-0, 5 KOs), son of Atlanta legend and former four-time heavyweight champion Evander Holyfield.

At Thursday’s final press conference, this is what the combatants had to say.

Jamel Herring:

“The odds just play to my story. I’ve always been an underdog, not just in boxing but in life, so I don’t get into the oddsmaker thing. It doesn’t bother me at all.”

“It’s not personal, it’s just business. We’re building a fight is all it means to me. I’ve heard worse and been through worse. We’re just two top competitors in the division trying to prove who is the best.”

“It just feels like another elite level fight in a loaded and talented division, so we just take it one fight at a time. We put all personal feelings to the side and just go to work and do what we have to do.”

“Atlanta is cool. I have family out here. My sons live out here as well. It’s another home and it’s an honor just to be fighting in the State Farm Arena because there’s not a lot of fights coming into town, so whenever you can bring a special fight to a certain city, it’s always a great thing.”

Shakur Stevenson:

“It means everything to me. This is my first time being able to go against a champion and being able to take a champion’s belt will mean a lot to me…. and I can’t wait to hear them say, “AND THE NEW!'”

“It’s definitely not personal, just business at the end of the day. He’s not my friend. I don’t hit him up and say, ‘let’s fight.'” We don’t have any conversations. I don’t talk to Jamel Herring outside of boxing.”

“It’s going to feel real good beating the whole team. I can’t wait to go against {Herring trainers Brian McIntyre and Red Spikes}. It’s not just Jamel that I’m fighting. I’ve got to beat Bomac and Red, and it’ll feel good doing that.”

“You’re going to see a special night, my coming out party. It’s going to be a great night, and he said he’s going to spoil the party, so let’s see if he can do it.”

Valdez: ‘We all want the winner of Shakur Stevenson and Jamel Herring’

It’s been a rough few weeks for WBC 130-pound champion Oscar Valdez(30-0, 23 KOs), as it was revealed that he tested positive for a banned substance(phentermine).

Despite testing positive, Valdez was still able to fight Robson Conceicao(16-1, 8 KOs) on Friday night as the Pascua Yaqui Tribe Athletic Commission and the WBC let the fight go on.

Ultimately, Valdez would defeat Conceicao by unanimous decision (115-112 2x and 117-110) in front of a sold-out crowd of 4,545 at Casino Del Sol in Tuscon, Arizona, to retain his title.

Conceicao, who was using his jab effectively, throwing combinations and consistently landing against Valdez, dominated the early part of the fight, but to Valdez’s credit, he battled hard in the second half of the fight, which helped him get the victory. 

One judge had Valdez winning the final seven rounds, while another had Valdez winning six of the final seven.

Valdez was aided by the referee, who deducted a point from Conceicao for a rabbit punch that was more like a tap in the ninth round. The point deduction was questionable at best.

This was Valdez’s first defense of his title after stopping MigueL Berchelt in February, and he survived.

Conceicao did not like the decision, and according to Valdez, he was disrespectful after the fight.

“He’s(Conceicao) over here yelling in my face,” Valdez said. “We’re grown men. Don’t be yelling in my face. He might be upset. Of course, you want to be a world champion, but don’t point at me, don’t be yelling in my face. I’ve been through enough this week, man,” Valdez said. “It makes the fight complicated when someone is trying to run the whole fight. I’m trying to put on a good show for my fans, give the fans what they want, which is a good fight. If he wants to run, you can’t win a fight running like that.”

Canceicao added: “This is boxing. I cannot go with his game. I played my game. Look at his face and look at my face. I have nothing on my face. Oscar’s is all fu—- up. I won this fight.”

After this win, Valdez has his sights set on the winner of the October 23 bout between WBO champion Jamel Herring and unbeaten star Shakur Stevenson.

“We all want the winner of Shakur Stevenson and Jamel Herring,” Valdez said. “Let’s do it.”

Look, Valdez probably should not have been fighting on Friday night and probably should have been stripped of his title. However, this is boxing, so at times, the sport can be a mess. Fortunately, for all parties involved, no one was seriously hurt.

(Photo: Mikey Williams/Top Rank via Getty Images)

Stevenson on Herring: ‘I am going to take his world title in devastating fashion on October 23’

Jamel “Semper Fi” Herring and Shakur Stevenson have been talking about fighting each other for some time, and now, it’s on! 

Herring will defend his WBO junior lightweight world title against former featherweight world champion Stevenson on Saturday, October 23, at State Farm Arena in Atlanta(ESPN).

The 35-year-old Herring (23-2, 11 KOs), a U.S. Marine Corps veteran, is looking to make his fourth straight successful title defense against Stevenson(16-0, 8 KOs).

Herring was at his best in April when he knocked out former two-weight world champion Carl Frampton in Dubai. However, defeating Stevenson won’t be easy, but when it’s all said and done, Herring plans to end the year the way he started it, which means a win.

“2021 has been good to me so far. I started the year with a big fight and a major win over Frampton,” Herring said via a press release. “I look forward to finishing out the year the same way I started it, not only with another huge victory but as a world champion. I have nothing else to say. I’m focused on October 23 and the fourth title defense of my WBO belt.”

Stevenson is 3-0 at junior lightweight, most recently picking up the interim WBO junior lightweight world title in June with a shutout decision over Namibia’s Jeremiah Nakathila.

According to the 24-year-old Stevenson, a former WBO featherweight world champion who vacated the title last year to move up to junior lightweight, Herring had no choice but to fight him.

“Jamel had to fight me, or he would’ve been stripped of his world title,” Stevenson said. “I boxed him into a corner, and I am going to take his world title in devastating fashion on October 23. I can’t wait to fight in front of the amazing fans in Atlanta. Trust me, you are going to see a show, and I will become a two-weight world champion.”

This is Stevenson’s moment to shine, but Herring won’t lie down. Expect a fun night in ATL.



Ali Walsh goes for victory number two:

Nico Ali Walsh (1-0, 1 KO), grandson of “The Greatest,” Muhammad Ali, looks to make it 2 for 2 against an opponent to be named in a four-round middleweight special attraction.

Ali Walsh’s Aug. 14 professional debut drew international media attention, and he knocked out Jordan Weeks in the opening round while wearing a pair of his grandfather’s old trunks. He’ll make his ring return in a city that hosted two of Muhammad Ali’s most memorable moments. State Farm Arena sits less than two miles from the Atlanta Olympic Cauldron Tower, where Ali lit the Olympic flame at the 1996 Summer Olympics. In October 1970, Ali fought Jerry Quarry at City Auditorium, his first fight in more than three years after being banned from the ring for refusing induction into the U.S. Army during the Vietnam War. Ali Walsh’s second pro fight will come three days shy of the 51st anniversary of the Quarry fight, which Ali won by third-round knockout.

The undercard — streaming live and exclusively on ESPN+ — will see the professional comeback of U.S. Olympic silver medalist Duke Ragan (4-0, 1 KO) in a six-round featherweight bout, Ragan’s Olympic teammate Troy Isley (2-0, 1 KO) in a six-rounder at middleweight, Georgia native Haven Brady Jr. (3-0, 3 KOs) in a four-round featherweight tilt, and the A-Town debut of junior middleweight prospect Evan “Yung Holy” Holyfield (7-0, 5 KOs), an Atlanta native and the son of heavyweight legend Evander Holyfield.