WBC/WBO/Ring Magazine junior lightweight world champion Shakur Stevenson has never fought at home as a world champion. The six letters on the front of his trunks — Newark — represents his past and immediate future.
Stevenson (18-0, 9 KOs), a 2016 Olympic silver medalist, will defend his belts against Brazilian Olympic gold medalist Robson Conceição (17-1, 8 KOs) on Friday evening at Prudential Center. He has fought at Prudential Center once before. In July 2019, he stopped Alberto Guevara in his last fight before winning the WBO featherweight world title that October.
A world championship homecoming, though, feels a little different. Stevenson kicked off fight week Tuesday afternoon at Boylan Street Recreation Center, where he met several dozen local children and was greeted by Councilwoman LaMonica McIver and other politicians from Newark and the surrounding areas. Stevenson trained at Boylan as a youngster and always makes a point to return to his roots.
Earlier that day, Conceição received a hero’s welcome at Mantena Global Care, a Newark-based nonprofit that serves the Latino community in the city. Newark’s Ironbound neighborhood is home to one of the nation’s largest Brazilian populations. Many local dignitaries, including East Ward Council Member Michael J. Silva, were on hand to support Conceição.
“I knew that Newark had a large Brazilian population, but I am humbled by the reception I have received today,” Conceição said. “I fight for my country, and I will go out there Friday night to win these titles for my people.”
ESPN, ESPN Deportes and ESPN+ (10 p.m. ET/7p.m. PT)
Shakur Stevenson vs. Robson Conceição, 12 rounds, Stevenson’s WBC/WBO/Ring Magazine Junior Lightweight World Titles
Keyshawn Davis vs. Omar Tienda, 8 rounds, lightweight
ESPN+ (6 p.m. ET/3 p.m. PT)
Andy Vences vs. Henry Lebron, 8 rounds, junior lightweight
Bruce Carrington vs. Jose Argel, 6 rounds, featherweight
Pablo Valdez vs. Noe Alejandro Lopez, 6 rounds, welterweight
Jahi Tucker vs. Jose Luis Sanchez, 8 rounds, welterweight
Orlando Gonzalez vs. Misael Lopez, 8 rounds, featherweight
Floyd Diaz vs. TBA, 6 rounds, junior featherweight
Antoine Cobb vs. Jaylan Phillips, 4 rounds, welterweight
Credit: Top Rank Boxing