NEWARK, NEW JERSEY – SEPTEMBER 21: Shakur Stevenson (L) and Robson Conceição (R) face-off in the course of the press convention forward of their WBC and WBO junior light-weight championship struggle at Prudential Heart on September 21, 2022 in Newark, New Jersey. (Photograph by Mikey Williams/High Rank Inc by way of Getty Pictures)
Shakur Stevenson says he isn’t feeling any stress forward of his first hometown title protection since turning into champion.
The 25-year-old can be defending his RING junior light-weight championship towards Robson Conceição this Friday on the Prudential Heart in what can be his first time headlining on the house of the NHL’s New Jersey Devils since his third spherical knockout of Alberto Guevara in 2019. Returning to his hometown as a champion means higher native accolades, like having the day declared Shakur Stevenson Day in Newark, and being offered with a plaque from his elementary alma mater Quitman Road College, however he says that none of that has shaken his focus.
“I’m probably not centered an excessive amount of on the stress. I’m actually centered on placing within the work come Friday night time. I’m simply able to struggle on the finish of the day. All I can take into consideration is preventing, performing and that’s the whole lot that’s on my thoughts proper now,” mentioned Stevenson (18-0, 9 knockouts), who additionally holds the WBC and WBO titles at 130 kilos, at Wednesday’s press convention.
Stevenson says he’s coming off his finest ever coaching camp as knowledgeable, the place he even sparred with undefeated heavyweight prospect and High Rank stablemate Jared Anderson in Houston, Texas.
Conceição (17-1, 8 KOs) should not have any points getting motivated for this chance. The 33-year-old from Salvador, Brazil can be getting a second likelihood at a world title following his controversial resolution loss to Oscar Valdez a yr in the past. He rebounded strongly from that efficiency to outclass the beforehand unbeaten Xavier Martinez and put himself into this place.
“I’m very motivated, I’ve skilled all my life for this second. The world was capable of see that I used to be higher than Oscar Valdez. I ought to have gained so [Stevenson] will not be actually defending two titles as a result of one ought to have been mine. I’m only a champion with out the crown and I’m prepared for Friday night time,” mentioned Conceição.
Stevenson says he was unimpressed with Conceição’s claims, stating that he had been much more decisive in his unanimous resolution win over Valdez to unify two of the 130-pound titles.
“He’s a superb fighter,” mentioned Stevenson of Conceição, “However I feel he misplaced towards Valdez. For those who left it within the judges’ arms, you then misplaced. I fought Valdez, and I beat the s–t out of him. I don’t have any excuses. He’s speaking about having COVID or one thing earlier than his final struggle. All I hear are excuses. I’m able to struggle. Inform him to not have any excuses on Friday night time. I’m able to beat him up.”
Conceição, who gained the light-weight gold on the 2016 Olympics the place Stevenson earned the bantamweight silver, insists on having Stevenson again up his speak on struggle night time.
“Shakur is somebody that I actually respect. He’s a fantastic athlete. I can inform that he’s younger, in all probability overly excited and speaks just a little an excessive amount of. This coming Friday, there’ll solely be one champ, and that champ is me,” mentioned Conceição.