William Zepeda is becoming one of the most fearsome fighters in the lightweight division. The southpaw, who packs a punch, can also throw a lot as well, as he threw nearly 1,600 punches over the course of twelve rounds against Joseph Diaz Jr., in October of last year. This past weekend, Zepeda headlined a Golden Boy Promotions card in Arlington, Texas, in which he targeted the body well, and dropped Jaime Arboleda three times, with the third and final shot ending the contest in the second round.
It is no longer a question of if Zepeda can contend with the best in the division, it is simply when can Zepeda compete with the best in the division. With Devin Haney holding all four world titles, that means Zepeda currently has to wait for simply one fighter - which we have learned can slow down a division. If Haney were to beat Vasiliy Lomachenko on May 20th, it appears Haney would move up in weight, and that could create some chance for Zepeda to fight for a vacant world title. The two names outside of Devin Haney and Vasiliy Lomachenko viewed as the best in the division are, Gervonta Davis and Shakur Stevenson, and when asked by ProBox TV News, about his thoughts on those fighters last week - Zepeda was very candid.
“They both have [great] boxing skills,” said Zepeda via a translator last week during his fight week media obligations about both Gervonta Davis and Shakur Stevenson. “Shakur is a great boxer, Gervonta is strong.”
Zepeda Emerges as a Contender, Fans Ponder Over Questions Ahead of Next Fight
Zepeda now enters the mix as one of the fighters we would like questions answered about. As up until this point we have seen very little to fault of the emerging formidable Mexican pressure fighter, who also has a very underrated fight IQ - now needs ‘the big fight’. At this division, sure we will probably see him fight his stablemate at Golden Boy Promotions, Floyd Schofield in years to come, but the two names that most fans are excited about for the next three-to-four years seem to be Shakur Stevenson and Gervonta Davis. We asked the top-rated lightweight his thoughts on both fighters, as he gave a slight edge to Davis.
It appears that fighting on pay-per-view type platforms and getting massive purses have really drawn the attention of Zepeda along with the power and explosiveness as though Zepeda is extremely respectful of both, it appears that he views Davis as the top fighter in the division. Given that Davis along with Ryan Garcia made over eight figures in terms of a live gate, and sold roughly 1.2 million pay-per-views, it is hard to argue with the consumer, and the consumer is demanding that Davis be looked at as the man in the division.
“[Davis] has the experience, he’s explosive, he’s strong and he’s fast,” further explained Zepeda. “[Davis] is also a good boxer as well.”
So What’s Next
As I wrote about earlier this week, I theorized mythical fights that could happen for Zepeda with Davis and Stevenson being inevitable big fights. Now despite Zepeda’s opinions on other fighters in the division, one thing is clear - Zepeda is elite, but now we need to see just how elite. The only way you can find that out is against top competition and that means he needs to find someone willing to fight him, and hope that all the other nonsense in boxing stays out of the mix from egos, network politics, and even more unimaginable things.
In most people's eyes, it shouldn’t be if Zepeda fights Stevenson or Davis, it should be when Zepeda fights them. As it seems Zepeda will be a long-reigning top contender and deserves a chance at a world title at some point. Given his age, under thirty years old, and his exciting style that has fans eager to see him fight - I certainly hope we get to see Zepeda in a big fight in 2023.
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