Boxing: Shakur Stevenson vs. Miguel Marriaga preview

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March 11th, 2020

If Bob Arum is to be believed, Shakur Stevenson might be the second coming of Floyd Mayweather. He very well may look like it against rugged journeyman and former title contender Miguel Marriaga, but can he do it in a way that will excite fans?

Stevenson faces off against Marriaga this weekend with designs on a much bigger fight down the line, and BetAmerica has you covered for fight night!

Shakur Stevenson vs. Miguel Marriaga

Shakur Stevenson
Miguel Marriaga

Marriaga is way out of his league

Though the odds have Stevenson a prohibitive favorite, it could actually be higher. Marriaga has floundered each time he’s fought outside his comfort level, which is several rungs below Stevenson’s championship caliber. He’s been lopsidedly beaten in each of his three losses and stopped in two of them.

Since he lost back-to-back fights in 2017, Marriaga hit the club circuit, where he has won his last four against appalling competition, with the hope he could stay fresh for another prime-time beating. Considering Stevenson probably needs an interim fight before a massive bout with Josh Warrington later this year, he could do worse, as Marriaga has a decent chin and pop.

Stevenson's precision makes up for his lack of power

With only 13 fights in his career, Stevenson is a smooth operator, whose defensive abilities and punch selection are reminiscent of a young Pernell Whitaker more so than Mayweather. Operating as a southpaw and using precision punching to make up for a presumed lack of power, Stevenson has too many tools to be done in by someone as crude as Marriaga.

We should see an immediate gap in skill between the two. Marriaga will be hypnotized by Stevenson’s southpaw style and unable to hit him when he does engage. Stevenson will beat him to the punch every time, build a strong lead on the cards, and Marriaga will need a miracle just to win a round. While Stevenson can probably land enough leather to stop Marriaga, he’s smart enough to know not to overextend himself if he feels he can’t crack Marriaga's chin.

Stevenson is unlikely to be tested

Expect the expected here. Stevenson will sleepwalk his way through a hopelessly overmatched Marriaga. Stevenson will win every round but will never press for a stoppage. With Warrington waiting in the wings, Stevenson will play it safe and pitch a shutout in what may turn out to be a difficult fight to watch.

Boxing free pick: Stevenson (-5150)

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