NEWARK, New Jersey – Shakur Stevenson doesn’t take pound-for-pound debates all that seriously.
The unbeaten Stevenson understands the subjective nature of constructing such lists. That’s why he hasn’t taken offense to criticism from those that feel he hasn’t accomplished enough to warrant a spot in the top 10.
Naturally, Stevenson believes he belongs among the 10 best boxers, pound-for-pound, in the sport.
“Where would I put myself on a pound-for-pound list?,” Stevenson asked during an interview with BoxingScene.com. “I would say like seven, maybe six.”
The group of champions Stevenson thinks should be ranked ahead of him is in line with most media lists.
“The guys I think are ahead of me are Terence Crawford, Errol Spence, Canelo Alvarez, maybe Inoue, maybe Tyson Fury,” Stevenson said. “That’s if we’re calling him pound-for-pound because he’s only at one weight class. I would put him on the pound-for-pound list because I think it’s for the best fighters on the planet. So, I’d say Tyson Fury, too. And I’d give it to Usyk, too. That’s about it.”
The 25-year-old Stevenson (18-0, 9 KOs) has won world titles in two weight classes and became a unified champion in the 130-pound division just 18 fights into his five-year professional career. The former WBO featherweight champion was stripped of his WBC and WBO 130-pound championships Thursday because he came in 1.6 pounds overweight for his 12-round fight Friday night against Brazilian contender Robson Conceicao (17-1, 8 KOs) at Prudential Center in Newark, Stevenson’s hometown.
Stevenson, a 2016 Olympic silver medalist, will move up to the lightweight division for his next fight because he conceded Thursday that he can no longer get down to 130 pounds. He would love to fight undefeated, undisputed 135-pound champion Devin Haney (28-0, 15 KOs), who will square off against Australia’s George Kambosos Jr. (20-1, 10 KOs) in an immediate rematch October 16 at Rod Laver Arena in Melbourne, Australia.
Haney has been much more vocal about expressing his displeasure with pound-for-pound lists, most notably with being omitted from The Ring magazine’s top 10.
“I really don’t care about it because I agree with what Devin said, that pound-for-pound lists are opinionated, at the end of the day,” Stevenson said. “It all is somebody’s opinion. People got different pound-for-pound lists. I agree with what he said. It’s opinionated, and some people feel I’m on the pound-for-pound list. Some people may feel I didn’t do enough. So, whatever they feel, that’s cool.”
BoxingScene.com ranked Stevenson ninth on its most recent pound-for-pound list (https://www.boxingscene.com/rankings/pound-for-pound). ESPN.com placed Stevenson at number nine on its list as well.
Stevenson didn’t crack the top 10 in The Ring’s most recent ratings.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.