The problem isn't a lack of want to match himself against the best fighters on the planet. For unbeaten Shakur Stevenson, the issue has become more about his opposition's unwillingness to do the same. 


Stevenson (15-0, 8 KOs), the sensational 23-year-old native of Newark, New Jersey, returns Saturday for what best can be summed up as his third straight stay-busy fight over the last 12 months, largely against anyone willing to step up. 

Yes, the former WBO featherweight titleholder and 2016 Olympic silver medalist will be competing for the WBO's interim belt at his new weight of 130 pounds, which could put him in line for a shot at full WBO junior lightweight champion (and good friend) Jamel Herring with a win. But Stevenson is fighting anything but a household name when he headlines an ESPN card against unheralded Jeremiah Nakathila (21-1, 17 KOs) at Virgin Hotels in Las Vegas. 


The 31-year-old Nakathila, aptly nicknamed "Low Key," is so obscure of an opponent despite his surprisingly high ranking by the WBO that Stevenson couldn't pronounce his last name during last week's appearance on "Morning Kombat." Nakathila has also never once fought professionally outside of his native Namibia. 









Fight card, odds

Shakur Stevenson -3500 vs. Jeremiah Nakathila +1400, WBO interim junior lightweight title
Julian Rodriguez -240 vs. Jose Pedraza +200, junior welterweights

Viewing info

Date: June 12 | Location: Virgin Hotels -- Las Vegas
Start time: 10 p.m. ET | How to watch: ESPN | Stream: fuboTV (try for free)

Prediction

Nakathila is such an obscure fighter that it's difficult to find anything close to an accurate assessment of his height or reach online. Tape of the fighter, however, shows him to be aggressive and lanky but not anywhere close to the technical level of Stevenson. 

The main issue for Nakathila will be how much he telegraphs his lead right hand and tends to favor it consecutively as his main punch from the orthodox stance. He doesn't traditionally work off of the jab and will need everything to go right in order for his pressure style to have an affect on his opponent while stepping up in class this high. 




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