Bob Arum encourages Frampton to avoid Shakur Stevenson and move up in weight

Bob Arum has encouraged Carl Frampton to stay away from Shakur Stevenson and to move up in weight if he wants the fast route to  becoming world champion again.

The legendary promoter was in Belfast this weekend and was one of many Michael Conlan supporters.

However the Top Rank boss, who also works with Ryan Burnett,  did take time to talk about his other Belfast featherweight and suggested a world title fight would come sooner if ‘The Jackal’ moved from feather up to super featherweight. He also attempted pouring cold water on the possibility of an all Top Rank bout with Shakur Stevenson, claiming the Rio Olympian would be too much for the Belfast fighter at this time.

The veteran fight maker isn’t putting pressure on the Belfast 32-year-old to make the jump but it won’t prove music to the Jamie Moore trained fighters a week shy of his first fight in 2019.

“Without any question [moving up] would be a quicker route,” said Arum when speaking to the BBC.

“There’s a lot of room if Carl decides to go for the super-featherweight title.”

Frampton faces Emmanuel Dominguez on Saturday and was ‘promised’ victory in that fight would see him go straight into a world title fight with  WBO featherweight champion Oscar Valdez later this year.

However the Mexican looks set to vacate his title as he is struggling at the weight meaning American Shakur Stevenson is set to face Joet Gonzalez for the now vacant WBO belt.

Frampton would more than likely welcome a shot at the winner of that clash, but Arum believes the Belfast fighter is best steering clear of the up and coming Top Rank prospect.

“We can make a fight for Carl at featherweight,” said Arum.

“[But] I don’t think at this stage that Frampton does well with Shakur. Shakur is an amazing talent who will probably end up to be a welterweight.”

Indeed, Arum has his sights set on a champions that he believes Frampton can defeat.

He has earmarked 130lb WBO champion Jamal Herring and WBC belt holder Miguel Berchelt, both of whom are also signed with Top Rank, as potential opponents for the Belfast fighter.

“I think Frampton would do very well with Herring,” he said.

“If he wants to fight Valdez and he’s going up to 130, he could still fight Valdez even if it’s not for a title, it would still be a huge fight in the United States.”

The idea of being crowned a three weight world champion may appeal to the modern Irish great, but a move to 130lbs could put rematches with Josh Warrington and Leo Santa Cruz off the table.


Jonny Stapleton contributor for 15 years and editor for the past decade. Have been covering boxing for over 16 years and writing about sport for a living for 19 years. Former Assistant Sports editor for the Gazette News Paper Group and former Tallaght Voice Sports Editor. Have had work published in publications around the world when working as a freelance journalist. Also co-founder of Junior Sports Media and Leinster Rugby PRO of the Year winner. email: