The unbeaten American, 26, holds the WBC lightweight title and previously reigned as WBO featherweight champion and unified super-featherweight champion. Despite having arguably not yet entered his prime, Stevenson took to social media on 29 January to write: “I’m officially retiring from the sport of boxing.
“I’ll be in the gym forever, perfecting my craft and helping the next generation become great and chase [their] dreams, but I ain’t [f***ing with] this weak boxing game.”
Stevenson’s tweet followed a post in which he reacted to reports that Emanuel Navarrete will fight Denys Berinchyk for the vacant WBO lightweight title, writing: “This is sickening.. S*** is Disgusting.” He soon added: “I [might as] well retire.” The major lightweight titles became vacant in late 2023, after undisputed champion Devin Haney relinquished the belts while preparing to move up a division. The unbeaten American then beat Regis Prograis in December to win the WBC super-lightweight belt.
Now Stevenson has reversed his decision, writing on X on Monday (12 January): “I’ll fight any and everybody this what I do.. See y’all in June #ChasingGreatness.”
Stevenson then replied to one user who noted the brevity of his retirement, writing: “I know right couldn’t keep myself away from it Love this s*** too much lol.”
Another X user then mentioned that a June return would mean seven months out of the ring for Stevenson, who last fought in November – when he beat Edwin De Los Santos on points to win the vacant WBC lightweight belt. “I know right I’m [with] u but that’s out of my control tho,” Stevenson replied. “I can only handle what’s in my control so see u in June!”
Fans are increasingly clamouring to see Stevenson take on one of his several high-profile compatriots at lightweight or super-lightweight next. Ryan Garcia, who lost to Gervonta “Tank” Davis last year, is following Haney up to the 140lbs division on 20 April to challenge the “Dream” for his WBC belt.
Garcia, Davis, Haney and Teofimo Lopez – who retained his WBO super-lightweight title against Jamaine Ortiz last week – are all potential opponents for Stevenson down the line.