Shakur Stevenson makes a big step-up in competition against Christopher Diaz!
On April 20, we’ll see one of boxing’s brightest prospects take a significant step-up under the bright lights at Madison Square Garden. Shakur Stevenson (10-0, 6KOs) will take on the hard-hitting Christopher Diaz (24-1, 16KOs), where he’ll look to solidify himself as a legit player at featherweight.
Stevenson, a 2016 Olympic Sliver Medalist, will face his first stern test as Diaz, a former world title challenger, comes looking to spoil the plans of the young prospect.
Heading into this match-up, Stevenson has pretty much all the physical advantages. He stands at 5’8 with Diaz being 5’6, and has a reach of 68” compared to Diaz’s 64”.
Keys to Victory: Shakur Stevenson
To be successful, Stevenson will need to be smart and aware of the puerto Rican’s powerful left hook. He cannot allow himself to be caught out of position where he can’t defend himself. Furthermore, he needs to establish his jab; something Masayuki Ito did successfully to hand Diaz his only loss.
Foot movement will be key as well for Stevenson, as he’s shown the ability to box from the outside and move fluidly around the ring. If Diaz isn’t able to set his feet and punch, he’ll be much more vulnerable.
Keys to Victory: Christopher Diaz
He has to get the respect of the young, confident fighter from the start! Rough him up and get inside his head, mentally throwing him off his game.
While extremely talented, Stevenson can be emotional. He also loves to bite down on the mouthpiece and fight in the pocket. If Diaz can frustrate Stevenson and make him abandon his game plan and fight, opportunity for body shots early could set the tone for an exciting second half.
All things considered, while I think this will be an extremely tough fight for Stevenson, I believe he gets the job done and wins a close but clear unanimous decision.
He has recently taken to social media calling out WBA junior lightweight champion Gervonta Davis. Maybe a win here will put him closer to a title opportunity he’s so desperately seeking.
By: Jerrell Fletcher