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Shakur Stevenson vs. Robson Conceicao Battle Predictions, Odds, Map, Preview, Start Time, TV Channel, Date

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In an era with a wealth of young, exciting talent, Shakur Stevenson may have the highest ceiling. On Friday night, Stevenson will continue the undefeated streak to his career as he fights against Robson Conceicao (ESPN and fuboTV 10pm ET).

Stevenson (18-0.9 KO) could finish his campaign at 130 pounds with this fight. After winning the WBO featherweight title with an October 2019 win over Joet Gonzalez, Stevenson made the transition to junior lightweight. Four fights later, Stevenson put on one of his most impressive shows when he stopped Jamel Herring in 10 rounds to win the WBO title. In April, Stevenson won the WBC belt with a decision over Oscar Valdez and became a unified champion at just 24 years old.

There is a lack of attractive fights for Stevenson at 130 pounds. Earlier this year, Emanuel Navarrete began negotiations to gain weight to face Stevenson, but talks would soon fall apart. With the future looking somewhat bleak at 130, a move to lightweight, even now that the division has lost Teofimo Lopez and Ryan Garcia, has much bigger potential fights for someone with Stevenson’s skills. Fights with Vasiliy Lomachenko, Gervonta “Tank” Davis and undisputed champion Devin Haney would all make boxing fans salivate.

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Thursday it got a little more interesting then Stevenson failed to hit the 130lb limit and dropped both of his titles on the scale. Stevenson weighed 131.6 pounds and told the committee he would not use the two-hour period to try to reduce the weight remaining. Stevenson is now ineligible to win back his pair of titles on Friday while Conceicao still can.

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Conceicao (17-1, 8 KO) won the lightweight gold medal at the 2016 Olympics for his home country of Brazil. Later that year, he turned pro, taking 16 consecutive wins to land his first challenge for a world title.

Conceicao would end up on the wrong side of a slightly controversial decision against Oscar Valdez in a fight for the WBC title. While many felt Conceicao deserved the nod, most disagreed with a 117-110 card being turned in for Valdez. That scorecard was so blatant that it led to a real rarity in boxing, with Judge Stephen Blea apologize and relinquish judgment to “go through a thorough training and assessment program.”

Valdez also failed a pre-fight VADA drug test but was still allowed to defend his title, adding another controversy to Conceicao’s first career defeat.

“I’m very motivated,” Conceicao said through a translator during their press conference. “I trained all my life for this moment. The world could see that I was better than Oscar Valdez. I should have won, so [Stevenson was] not really defending two titles, because one really should have been mine. I’m just a champion without the crown, and I’m ready for Friday night.”

He is now taking his second chance at winning a world title, including the WBC belt Stevenson won with a dominating show against Valdez.

On Friday night’s co-feature, another Olympian will gain more exposure as Keyshawn Davis takes on Omar Tienda Bahena at lightweight. Davis, 23, took home the silver medal at the 2020 Games in Tokyo. He is 5-0 since turning pro in 2021 and four of those fights have ended at a standstill. Bahena, 34, is 25-5 as a pro and has only retired once.

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“Right now I feel like I’m 18 again. I’m blossoming now. I can’t wait to show everyone how good I look on Friday night,” Davis said in an interview with Ring Magazine. “I know Tienda is older than me. He has more experience than me, but I could see he’s scared. I could see it in his face. He won’t try too much. He’s enjoying the moment. This is the greatest card he’s ever been. Inside the ring he comes to fight. He’s not afraid to pack a punch. He’s going to be a pressure fighter. I’m not afraid to take a punch, too though I don’t get hit. But I like fighting. If you have a fighter who has skill at it, that’s extraordinary.”

Stevenson vs. Conceicao fight card, odds

Opportunities through Caesars Sportsbook

Shakur Stevenson (c)-2000 Robson Conceicao +1000 WBO and WBC junior lightweight titles
Keyshawn Davis -4500 Omar Tienda Bahena +1600 lightweight

Forecast

Results against shared opponents don’t always create math that translates into being predictive. Still, it’s hard to overlook the ease with which Stevenson dealt with Valdez and the battle Conceicao had against him. Stevenson is a master boxer with solid defense and a phenomenal ability to manage distances, which allowed him to tear Valdez apart, while Conceicao made a tough decision that he may or may not have deserved to win.

Stevenson’s skills have led to many of his fights being labeled “boring.” It’s not entirely unfair. He doesn’t take unnecessary risks, even against fighters where he could clearly accelerate and score impressive finishes. But the blame must also fall on the opponents for not being able to force him out of a style that is so effective and has earned him multiple world titles in two weight divisions at such a young age.

The thinking is that an opponent must pressure Stevenson, take away his ability to dictate the range and pace of a fight, and hit hard enough to hurt Stevenson so that he hesitates to throw counterattacks. Unfortunately for Conceicao, he just doesn’t have much pop in his punches. He can be aggressive and has solid technical skills, but the lack of strength means that one of the cornerstones of the game plan to beat Stevenson is missing.

Stevenson is simply better anywhere the fight can go and since Conceicao is unlikely to crack Stevenson’s chin, the biggest question is whether Stevenson decides to make a statement and go looking for a knockout. Choice: Shakur Stevenson via UD

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