Home Boxing News Shakur Stevenson leaves fans baffled by lacklustre performance against Edwin De Los...

Shakur Stevenson leaves fans baffled by lacklustre performance against Edwin De Los Santos

Shakur Stevenson and Edwin De Los Santos. Photo credit: Mikey Williams/Top Rank

Shakur Stevenson 21-0 (10) became a three-weight world champion in what will go down as one of the worst title fights in modern history.

It. Was. A. Stinker.

Matched against Dominican southpaw Edwin De Los Santos 16-2 (14), the 26-year-old lefty from Newark, New Jersey was looking to add the vacant WBC lightweight strap to his WBO featherweight title and WBC and WBO super featherweight belts at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada on Saturday night.

He managed to do just that. But very little else.

In a bout largely devoid of punches thrown, Stevenson stood off De Los Santos, throwing the occasional jab. The 24-year-old De Los Santos followed Stevenson around the ring, unable to cut him off or force exchanges.

This went on for 12 long, excruiciating rounds.

CompuBox recorded 65 punches connecting for Stevenson out of 209 thrown. To put this in perspective, Robson Conceição threw more than half that number in the final round of his fight against Emanuel Navarrete in the main support bout.

But De Los Santos doesn’t get off easily here either. His 40 landed punches are the fewest landed punches in a 12-round fight in CompuBox’s 38-year history. Again for comparison, Navarrete landed 23 power punches in the 11th round against Conceição.

Stevenson and De Los Santos respectively landed 19 and 14 power punches over 12 rounds. Neither fighter reached double-digits in landed punches in any round. Stevenson won the fight by landing 46 jabs.

In terms of action, the bout rivalled the notorious Guillermo Rigondeaux vs John Riel Casimero fight. Yes, it was that bad.

After the fight Stevenson admitted he didn’t look good in there, but there’s more to it than that. Fans will avoid his future fights in droves unless he can show better entertainment value and big name boxers in and around the 135-pound division like Devin Haney, Gervonta ‘Tank’ Davis and Vasiliy Lomachenko will find more compelling dance partners.

“I had a bad performance tonight,” Stevenson said. “That’s all I’m really focused on. I wasn’t feeling too good, so I’ll live with it.

“It’s okay. I came here and got the victory and that’s all I wanted to do. I just didn’t feel good. I didn’t feel good before the fight. Honestly, I had already told myself that if I feel like this in the ring and if it’s not going well, I’m going to make sure that I box and get the victory.”

Stevenson was given an opportunity in the post-fight interview to blame an injury for his poor showing. Somewhat bafflingly, he refused to take it.

The fight was so poor that this writer was hoping referee Harvey Dock would disqualify them both for failing to engage.

De Los Santos refused to shoulder any of the blame.

“We all know what happened. He came for a track meet. He didn’t come to fight,” he said.

“I showed that I am on a higher level because he never stood and fought like he does with other fighters. I did my job. He came to survive. That’s what he did. They gifted him the title, but I’m the people’s champion.”

Stevenson’s describes himself as the “future P4P king” on his X bio. Based on yesterday’s performance, that’s a long, long way into the future.