Undefeated former two-weight world champion Shakur Stevenson (20-0, 10 KOs) secured his shot at the WBC lightweight title with a commanding sixth-round TKO against Japanese puncher Shuichiro Yoshino (16-1, 12 KOs) Saturday night in front of a hometown crowd at Newark’s Prudential Center.
Stevenson’s arsenal was on full display tonight as he used his signature lead right hand to control range before landing his offense. Yoshino, who had questioned Stevenson’s power before the fight, was aggressive but in a way that was too predictable.
The 25-year-old picked up on this and clipped him with a short left hand, dropping him in the second round. Stevenson then was able to do anything he wanted, whether it was to pick shots on the outside or to even allow himself to be pushed on the ropes to land counter uppercuts to the body.
In the fourth round, a three-punch combo sent Yoshino to the canvas for the second time. Stevenson continued landing at will until referee Allen Huggins was forced to stop the action at 1:35 of the sixth.
Stevenson said. “He felt my power. I sat down on a couple punches and dropped him. Honestly, I wanted the ref to let it go on a little bit longer. I had just caught my second wind. I was going to put him out.
“Newark’s main name is the Bricks. And tonight, I had bricks in my hands. We did what we were supposed to do. We settled our business. And now we’re going to enjoy it with the family.
“Just tell all those other lightweights to get ready. I’m waiting for them. I can’t wait for them to finish the fights they’ve got going on, and then it’s my turn.
“Tell him [Devin Haney] to come on. I’ve been waiting for this for a long time. I swear to God. I’ve been waiting for that for a long time. Me and Devin been in the ring with each other for years. I always got the best of Devin. Tell him, ‘come on.’”
Jared Anderson Finishes George Arias in Three
Jared “The Real Big Baby” Anderson (14-0, 14 KOs) is ready for the top names in the heavyweight division.
The 6’4, 240-pound wrecking ball handed George Arias (18-1, 7 KOs) his first defeat as a pro with a third-round TKO in tonight’s co-feature. Anderson took control of the center of the ring to start the bout, while Arias, who is only 5’11”, eschewed conventional wisdom and tried boxing from the outside.
A disciplined jab from Anderson allowed him to easily win the first two rounds. In the third, however, the 23-year-old native of Toledo, Ohio, switched to southpaw and began picking up the pace with violent combinations.
A left uppercut followed by a right hook from Anderson wobbled Arias towards the end of the round. Arias, who had by then suffered a cut above his left eye, went to his corner at the sound of the bell. But his team, after seeing the condition he was in, informed referee David Fields to put a halt to the fight.
Anderson said, “I’m the best heavyweight in the world. I don’t give a f*ck what nobody is talking about. You hear me? I made that look easy man because he helped me make it look easy. He wasn’t throwing punches for real. I kept my defense right. My jab was on point. It was an easy night.
“I want those top names. I want those top contenders. Everybody who keeps calling people out, put my name on the list now. I’m not ducking. I’m not running. And you goin’ to catch this smoke.”
Keyshawn Davis Batters Anthony Yigit
U.S. Olympic silver medalist Keyshawn Davis (8-0, 6 KOs) faced his stiffest challenge to date, and he passed with flying colors.
The 24-year-old standout defeated former world title challenger Anthony Yigit (26-3-1, 10 KOs) via TKO in the ninth round of their scheduled 10-rounder.
Davis took the center of the ring at the opening bell and began walking down Yigit, who was clearly uncomfortable with the pressure being applied. By the third and fourth rounds, Davis exuded confidence, landing single shots to the body before easily evading return fire and often doubling and tripling punches with a single hand in round five.
In the seventh round, Yigit began talking trash in a desperate attempt to get Davis to abandon his game plan, but it was to no avail as the native of Norfolk, Virginia, began punishing Yigit with combos. The continued offense from Davis forced referee Benjy Esteves Jr. to end the fight at :21 of the ninth.
Davis said, “It was fun. We were both talking trash. He kind of brought that anger out of me today, but I had to find a way to control it, and we got the victory.
“I really just asked ‘BoMac’ what to do. He told me to start moving to my left more, to use more feints, and to let him come to me so that the knockout can come.”
PHOTO CREDIT: Mikey Williams/Top Rank