Featherweight Shakur Stevenson, one of boxing's fastest-rising prospects, is getting the homecoming fight he has wanted.
Stevenson will take on Hairon Socarras in the 10-round main event of a Top Rank Boxing on ESPN card on July 13 (ESPN and ESPN Deportes, 10:30 p.m. with preliminaries streaming on ESPN+ beginning at 7 p.m. ET) at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey, Top Rank announced on Monday in conjunction with a news conference.
Stevenson (11-0, 6 KOs), 21, a 2016 U.S. Olympic silver medalist, has fought three times in New York but not yet as a professional in nearby Newark, where he grew up.
"Newark, I'm coming home! I've wanted to fight at Prudential Center since my pro debut, and the time has finally come," Stevenson said. "I haven't fought in Newark in over four years, and I promise it will be worth the wait.
"On July 13, I'm going to show the ESPN audience and Hairon Socarras what Brick City is all about. Socarras is an undefeated fighter, but he has never been in the ring with anyone like me. This is my first main event, and my hometown fans are going to see the best Shakur Stevenson yet."
Stevenson is coming off his biggest win as a pro, a lopsided 10-round decision against former junior lightweight world title challenger Christopher Diaz on April 20 on the Terence Crawford-Amir Khan undercard at Madison Square Garden in New York.
Socarras (22-0-3, 13 KOs), 26, a Miami-based Cuban, has been a pro since 2011 but faced limited opposition. He is excited to step up in class.
"I am so excited to be on such a big stage," Socarras said. "I am looking forward to fight night. This is what boxing is about. I will bring my 'A' game and give it my all. I have a surprise for Shakur. I have the utmost respect for my opponent until the bell rings. Although my mother isn't here on earth any longer, I want to thank her for all the great years she gave me, and this one's for her. Thank you to ESPN for this platform and Top Rank for giving me a shot at their top prospect. I'm coming to win."
In the co-feature, bantamweight prospect Joshua Greer Jr. (20-1-1, 12 KOs), 24, of Chicago, will face Nikolai Potapov (20-1-1, 11 KOs), 29, a Russia native fighting out of New York, in a title eliminator for the No. 2 ranking in the IBF.
"I've been ready for these types of fights. I've been perfecting my craft every day, and I'm ready to put on a great show," Greer said. "I'm going to continue to be Mr. ESPN, and watch out -- I have something special planned for everyone who tunes in. Potapov looks like my toughest fight on paper, but he's an average fighter. I'm going to show that there are levels to this game. He will be exposed because I am on a different level. I'm the best fighter he ever fought."
The ESPN+ portion of the card will include 2008 Indian Olympic bronze medalist Vijender Singh (10-0, 7 KOs), 33, against an opponent to be named in an eight-round super middleweight fight and junior middleweight prospect Vikas "The Indian Tank" Krishan (2-0, 1 KO), 27, a 2012 and 2016 Indian Olympian, against an opponent to be named in a six-round bout.