Shakur Stevenson failed to make weight Thursday ahead of his fight against Robson Conceicao on Friday in Newark, New Jersey, and will be stripped of his two 130-pound titles, per championship fight rules governed by the WBO and WBC.
The 25-year-old weighed 131.6 pounds and had two hours to shed 1.6 pounds, but decided he couldn’t lose the excess weight.
“I gave everything” tweeted Stevenson, ESPN’s No. 1 junior lightweight. “I’ve been a pro my whole career and made weight, but my body just can’t make it to 130 anymore. My health has to come first. I’m moving up to 135 in my next fight.”
Conceicao, an Olympic gold medalist, will be eligible to win the two vacant titles that remain vacant if he loses. Stevenson and Conceiao agreed to a financial penalty for Stevenson’s lack of weight to allow the fight to go ahead, sources said. Stevenson was scheduled to earn $3 million per source.
Conceicao, a 33-year-old from Brazil, weighed in at 129.6 pounds for the second title opportunity of his career. His second crack at a championship came in September 2021 when he dropped a controversial decision to Oscar Valdez.
Valdez was cleared to fight despite the presence of a banned substance in his system after testing positive weeks before the fight. Conceicao (17-1, 8 KOs) bounced back with Xavier Martinez in January, while Valdez was dominated by Stevenson in April.
Stevenson (18-0, 9 KOs) will be fined by the New Jersey State Athletic Commission.
Stevenson previously held a title at 126 pounds. An Olympic silver medalist, Stevenson could seek high-stakes bouts with fellow Top Rank boxers Devin Haney, the undisputed lightweight champion, and Vasiliy Lomachenko at 135 pounds.