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Shakur Stevenson: 'I'm gonna smoke Devin Haney'


Shakur Stevenson was taken aback when ESPN's Bernardo Osuna gave him a post-fight statement from Devin Haney in the ring on Saturday night.


Stevenson believes Haney will easily defeat Vasiliy Lomachenko next month, but he had anticipated that Haney would give up his four lightweight titles and compete in the 140-pound weight class instead. Haney claimed that he will stay in the lightweight class following a victory over Lomachenko and would want to meet Stevenson in what would be an intriguing matchup between unbeaten American lightweights. 


Stevenson, 25, from Newark, wants to compete for the IBF, WBA, WBC, and WBO 135-pound titles in one fight, not just the WBC one, so he hopes Haney means what he says. In the main event of ESPN's three-bout show, Stevenson (20-0, 10 KOs) defeated Tokyo's Yoshino (16-1, 12 KOs) to become the mandatory challenger for one of Haney's four belts according to the WBC.


“Tell him come on,” Stevenson told a group of reporters after he stopped Yoshino. “If that’s what he wanna do, I mean, I don’t know why would he watch [the Youshino fight] and say that? I never seen Devin Haney really even hurt anybody before. He ain’t really got the punching power, so if he watched that he could tell that I could punch. I don’t know what would make him say, ‘Let’s do it.’ Maybe he’s just a competitor. Maybe I just gotta respect that.”


Haney is regarded as one of the sport's top technicians. The undisputed lightweight champion, a native of Oakland, defeated Australia's George Kambosos Jr. (20-2, 10 KOs) in both of his most recent bouts, both lasting 12 rounds.


If Stevenson gets that chance later this year, he still has a sneaking suspicion that he'll shock a lot of people by soundly defeating Haney.


“I think it’s gonna be easy work,” Stevenson said. “I think I’m gonna smoke him. I think I’m gonna shock everybody by smoking him, making it a real easy fight. Everybody’s gonna be like, ‘Damn, dude is who he say he is.’ ”

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