It’s 2020, and the art of pugilism is alive and well. Despite what the naysayers claim, the sport of boxing is here to stay. Why? Boxing is and always has been a spectator sport carried by its athletes.
Sure, purists can watch two unknown fighters in the ring display their skills and appreciate all the technical nuances. If you can understand everything that happens inside the ring, boxing sure is a beautiful spectacle to watch
But to us casual fans, there has to be a deeper connection to a fighter in order for us to invest our time and actually care about what we’re watching. A lot of us often end up emotionally invested in a particular athlete’s career.
Take Filipino boxing icon Manny Pacquiao, for example, who enjoys a massive fan following because of his fearsome finishing power, as well as his larger than life personality. Or archrival Floyd Mayweather, who many fans watch because they either love him, or hate him, or both. The fact of the matter is we watch boxing to be entertained.
But Pacquiao and Mayweather are yesterday’s news. It’s time to move on.
If you’re a boxing fan and want to know which young fighters to follow today, we’ve come up with a short list of a few suggestions. Though these young athletes are still just on the rise, and haven’t been tested in the ring just yet, they surely have massive superstar potential.
Let’s check out some of the most exciting young boxers of the modern-day. Today, Evolve Daily shares five young and untested boxing prospects.
1) Ryan Garcia
Ryan Garcia is tall, rangy, and skillful. Nicknamed “The Flash”, Garcia has the speed and power to grant him the crowd-pleasing knockouts.
He’s got the pretty boy looks and the charisma, and a pair of the fastest most powerful hands for a young fighter in the sport today. Many fans liken him to a young Oscar De La Hoya, who coincidentally promotes him via his Golden Boy Promotions outfit.
At just 22 years of age, Garcia is not only young, he’s also incredibly inexperienced. Fans need not worry though, as the men guiding Garcia’s career are the same men responsible for the rise of Canelo Alvarez. Needless to say, he’s in good hands.
Unbeaten so far at 20 wins, including 17 knockouts, Garcia is just about on the precipice of a breakout performance against a high-profile dance partner. Names floating around include veteran Jorge Linares, and rising star Gervonta Davis.
With 6.9 million followers on Instagram, Garcia amazingly pulls in the box office numbers despite being virtually untested in the boxing ring.
2) Jaime Munguia
23-year-old Jaime Mungia is the future of Mexican boxing. Guided by trainer, Mexican boxing legend Erik “El Terible” Morales, he certainly has that distinct Mexican style down pat.
Despite being relatively young in the sport, the undefeated upstart from Tijuana destroyed Sadam Ali in 2018 to capture the WBO Super Welterweight World Title, which he has since successfully defended five times.
Though he is a world champion already at such a young age, Mungia is considered largely untested. No one has been able to push Mungia very much in his career at this point.
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Mungia currently operates at 154 and 160 pounds, where there is a plethora of good competition and interesting matchups to be made. While his talent has certainly carried him thus far, many fans believe Mungia could be exposed by a truly top-tier foe.
The kid is getting better by the day, however, so the likelihood of him being unprepared for a ‘real’ challenge in the ring gets smaller by the day.
3) Devin Haney
Nicknamed “The Dream”, lightweight prospect Devin Haney surely fights like one. With a highly-technical skillset, and smooth as butter execution, Haney has been absolutely phenomenal in the ring thus far.
The 21-year-old learned boxing from his father, but is now being honed by none other than boxing megastar Floyd “Money” Mayweather Jr. himself. Haney has had a great relationship with the Mayweathers throughout his young career, and has been trained by Floyd Sr., Jeff Mayweather, and the late Roger Mayweather in the past.
He is currently the WBC Lightweight World Champion, but none of the names on his resume come off as remarkable.
Haney appears to be on a collision course with Ryan Garcia, however. The two have faced each other six times in the amateur ranks, each man with three victories in their rivalry. Now that they are undefeated in the professional ranks and just about ready to become superstars, a highly-anticipated showdown between the two seems to be brewing.
4) Shakur Stevenson
23-year-old featherweight Shakur Stevenson is a former Olympic silver medalist, and one of the most successful amateur boxers to come out of the United States since legend Andre Ward captured gold in 2004.
Stevenson’s potential is massive, and Top Rank head honcho Bob Arum has complete faith that he has a superstar in the making. Arum recently proclaimed Stevenson the “second coming of Floyd Mayweather.” While those are some hefty shoes to fill, Stevenson seems to appreciate the comparison and is working hard to live up to the hype.
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He is the current WBO Featherweight World Champion. But one look at his resume, and you can discern that he has yet to be truly tested.
Despite having not met his match in the ring as of yet, Stevenson remains optimistic that his time will soon come. He’s been adamant about setting up the biggest fights in the soonest possible time. Perhaps once the pandemic eases and boxing resumes, Stevenson is the first guy we see back.
5) Daniel Dubois
Undefeated British heavyweight prospect Daniel “Dynamite” Dubois has a lot going for him. Despite being so young in the sport, Dubois has already captured a handful of regional and minor belts, and has emerged as one of the best young boxing talents to come out of the United Kingdom since Anthony Joshua.
Out of 14 total victories, Dubois has 13 sensational knockouts, with only the rough and rugged Kevin Johnson surviving against him until the final bell. Last year, Dubois won all five of his fights, with notable victories over Razvan Cojanu, Richard Lartey, Ebenezer Tetteh, Kyotaro Fujimoto, and Nathan Gorman.
While those names aren’t exactly familiar to most casual boxing fans, Dubois cannot be underestimated. Dubois just has that raw power, that certain “x-factor” which is a key ingredient in every boxing superstar.
Dubois is scheduled to return this month against Erik Pfeifer. The bout will be for the WBO International Heavyweight Title. It’s expected to be Dubois’ toughest test so far. It’s an opportunity for Dubois to prove to the world that he’s the real deal.
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