Courtesy: Top Rank Boxing

Recap: Stevenson vs Caraballo

Stevenson vs Caraballo

As businesses start to open up after about two months on lockdown due to COVID-19, Boxing was finally back on and one of its rising stars Shakur “Sugar” Stevenson improved to 14-0 with his eighth finish when he stopped Felix Caraballo in the sixth round of their non-title Junior Lightweight fight.



stevenson vs caraballo
Photo Credit: Boxing News

Many were excited to not only have the sweet science of boxing back on T.V. but also at the chance to see the former Olympic Silver Medalist in action.

At the young age of 22 years old, the Newark, New Jersey native, has already drawn comparisons to one of the games all-time greats, Floyd Mayweather, for his defensive fighting style. Compared to Mayweather at the same age, Stevenson takes on average three fewer hits per round, as Floyd did (4.4 to 7.7).

The orthodox fighter has shown some of the same brilliance, awareness, and quick reflexes that helped propel his predecessor to fortune and fame.

On this night, the WBO Featherweight Champion would not put on a defensive masterpiece but rather show that when he has too, he’ll apply pressure and go for the win.


From the opening bell, Stevenson would be right in the face of his opponent and unload vicious right hooks to the body that dropped Carballo in the first round.


That set the tone as the champ would show off his speed, accuracy, timing, and ability to stay aggressive. Fighting inside when needed, then stepping back and keeping his opponent at bay, which allowed Stevenson to dictate where the fight would take place and the pace he would set.

Unloading combinations, Stevenson, at one point, landed a four-shot variety that could be heard through the arena due to no fans in attendance. It was thunderous. It was impressive. A lighting quick jab, followed by hook after hook to the body, the champion knew this was an excellent chance for him to show fans watching that he’s not just another hyped up name, but the next man up to carry the sport.

There is legit top-level skill behind his name that folks are going to have to pay attention to as he climbs the ranks.



At several points, Stevenson looked to have stunned his foe but credit to Caraballo who showed his own brand of toughness and fought through some rounds that a lesser fighter wouldn’t have been able to make it through.



Photo Credit: Yahoo Sports

It looked as if Stevenson hurt his left hand in the fifth round as he landed a cross on the forehead of Caraballo. For anyone who’s watched enough combat sports or seen the 1992 film Gladiator starring James Marshall, Brian Dennehy, and Cuba Gooding Jr., the forehead is the hardest part of the body. But that wasn’t enough to stop the undefeated champ from achieving what he set out to do.

Despite the injury, Stevenson landed a left to the solar plexus that folded Caraballo like a lawn chair. There was no need for the ref to count as it was immediately evident that this fight was over.

In the post-fight interview, Stevenson said that yes, he did hurt his hand, but didn’t think he’d broken it and that he knew this was the kind of fighter he was supposed to come out and dominate against start to finish. Although he put on an offensive show, he still showed his defensive prowess by only being hit eighteen times in six rounds.


With the impressive showing, an Olympic Silver Meadal, the characteristics that former boxing great Andre Ward described as “something we usually see in veteran fighters. This kid has it now at his age (22) the sky could be the limit.”


Of course, as he continues his move up the rankings, he will be facing tougher competition and will have more pressure on him to perform at the highest level as he gains more fame. Will Stevenson be able to do what we have seen many others fall short in, living up to their potential for all-time greatness?

Time will tell, but one thing was established Tuesday night in Las Vegas. There’s a young man by the name of Shakur Stevenson who you would be wise to keep on eye on going forward. He could be someone we are talking about as a perennial Top 10 fighter for years to come.

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-Kalani Lua – Franchise Sports Media

Twitter @klua11


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