30.10.2019 - 01:17 Uhr
boxinginsider.com
By: Hans ThemistodeWhat were you doing at 22 years old? Most likely you were in school or working at some job that made you feel like your life was in purgatory as you tried to figure things out. For Shakur Stevenson, at the age of 22 he just won his first world title when he easily outpointed Joet Gonzalez this past Saturday night. The talent of the former Olympic silver medalist has always been apparent, but now, he has put everything together. Comparisons in boxing, or any sport for that matter, is a common occurrence. Both the fans and media alike aren't content with just watching an outstanding athlete dominate. They must place a comparison on them. Kobe Bryant was always compared to Michael Jordan. Lebron James has continued to hear about the Magic Johnson comparisons. Tom Brady and Joe Montana are seemingly joined at the hip as well. Comparisons aren't a bad thing. To the contrary, it can lead to a ton of pressure. Well, that is only if the person allows it. Comparing one former great player to a current one is one of the biggest forms of flattery that can be shown. Shakur Stevenson is a newly minted world champion in just his 13th professional fight. It really doesn't make any sense just how phenomenal he is at such a young age. The way in which he dominated Joet Gonzalez, who is by all means a solid fighter in his own right, was downright impressive. One person who has been around longer than seemingly everyone is Stevenson’s manager, Bob Arum. The one of kind promoter has seen his fair share of great fighters. Comparing them to their past counterparts is something that Arum has done on countless occasions. It comes as no surprise to see Arum compare his young star to another fighter he once had under his stable. Yet, the one he was referring to, did raise a few eyebrows.“I thought it was a really magnificent performance,” said Arum. “In a lot of ways, it reminded me of a left-handed Floyd Mayweather.”That’s quite a mouthful, isn't it? To juxtapose Stevenson and Mayweather this early in his career says a lot about the talent of Stevenson already. Let’s not forget that Mayweather did win multiple titles in five different weight classes to go along with ending his career with a perfect record through 50 fights. If Stevenson can even come close to that than he is destined for the hall of fame. Arum wasn't the only notable name who was impressed with Stevenson. Multiple division champion and current pound for pound stalwart Terence Crawford emphasized the growth he has seen in Stevenson from when he first started to where he is now.“He’s grew tremendously,” Crawford said. “He’s getting stronger. He’s getting wiser. He’s getting more sharper. He’s getting more comfortable in the ring. When I first sparred Shakur, he was just a little kid. You know? And now, we sparring, he’s learning so much in the ring by just sparring me, you know, he’s trying things on me that I do on him on me now. And I look at it and I say, ‘OK, well, he’s not just sparring me now. He’s picking up little bits and pieces of things that I do inside the ring.”From the moment Stevenson came onto the scene there was no doubting his greatness, but he has made his mark far quicker than anyone could have imagined. If he continues his rapid rise to the top he might, again might, live up to the lofty expectations placed upon him.The post Shakur Stevenson: A Left Handed Floyd Mayweather? appeared first on BoxingInsider.com.
  

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By: Oliver McManusWith boxingon hold for the foreseeable future, at least in the form we know it, BoxingInsider is taking a look at top prospects to keep an eye on when the sportreturns. The five names below cover bantamweight, super bantamweight andfeatherweight: they all, naturally, have different ceilings to their abilitybut, most importantly, they all pack some entertaining punch!As with last week we will start proceedings witha sumptuous Uzbek talent. Shakhobidin Zoirov is another pearlfrom the far-flung country with Gold at the 2016 Rio Olympics and 2019 WorldChampionships in Yekaterinburg. Both those triumphs came at 52kg and southpawnow competes in the slightly heavier bantamweight division (53.5kg). Havingdebuted in April last year, Zoirov made light work of Anthony Holt (5-4-1): aslam-dunk straight left hand inside of 20 seconds and that was that. Since thenhe’s moved to 3-0 in equally breezy fashion.Elie Konki, as it stands, is one of the more advanced fighters on this list, to date,  having captured the EBU-EU bantamweight title in December. The Frenchman, a Rio 2016 competitor, first caught my attention with a real nip-and-tuck encounter against Benedikt Croze for the French bantamweight title in 2018. In that fight he was forced to work under pressure but looked comfortable on the back-foot and dug deep to grind the win. Since then the 28 year old defended his title, with relative comfort, on three occasions and hand Sebastian Perez (12-0-1 at the time) his first loss to claim the EU strap.Comparisons between Dennis McCann and NaseemHamed are as frequent as rainfall in Quibdo, Colombia (the world’s rainiestcity, in case you didn’t work it out). There are undeniable similarities andthe influence is clear: whilst McCann has some polishing work to do youwouldn’t expect anything less from a 19 year old prodigy. Guided by FrankWarren, you can be assured that he’ll take the right steps at the right timeand he’s already tested the durability of four of his six opponents. Despitefacing journeymen, again to be expected, he does so in an eye catching mannerthat ensures they leave the ring wondering just what they’d been up against.Another southpaw making the list is 21 year old RaymondFord who has looked every bit as ‘Savage’ as his nickname would suggest.A 2018 U.S Golden Gloves champion there was significant clamour for hissignature on a promotional contract and it was Eddie Hearn who secured it. Partof a new dawn with Matchroom USA the, once, Olympic contender has reallysettled in the paid ranks with five wins inside nine months of his pro debut.That included a four round pasting of, noticeably teak tough, AleksandrsBirkenbergs and two well worked stoppages in Phoenix and Providence. Don’tsleep on him because Raymond Ford looks cut out for the very top.Musashi Mori is yet anotheryoung fighter coming out of Japan that looks like a superstar in the making.One bonus, you could say, of boxing in Japan is that, almost certainly, by thetime you’re ready to burst onto the world scene you remain very much a hiddengem. Mori is one such name having already worked his way up the WBO rankings byway of their Asia-Pacific featherweight belt. At 20 years of age and 11-0 sincehis debut in December 2016 the southpaw is consistently maturing in the ring.The word coming out of Japan, at the start of the year anyway, was that hewould contest a bona-fide world title in 2020 and, whilst that may well be onhold, the ambition certainly isn’t.The post Prospect Watch: Bantamweight, Super Bantamweight, and Featherweight appeared first on BoxingInsider.com.

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