Liam Paro responds to Shakur Stevenson sparring clip ahead of return vs. Montana Love

Australian super lightweight contender Liam Paro says he’s got no time for “schoolyard bullsh*t” after being inadvertently caught in the middle of some classic boxing social media drama.

A video of Paro sparring WBC lightweight champion Shakur Stevenson was circulated last week after the American sent it to Bill Haney, the father of former undisputed 135-pound champ, Devin.

The vision popped up while Stevenson was under-fire for his cautious performance in defeating Edwin De Los Santos, a fight which broke the record for the fewest punches landed over a 12-round contest.

MORE: What Devin Haney’s decision to vacate lightweight titles means for Gervonta Davis, Shakur Stevenson, Lomachenko, Kambosos and more

In the short clip, Stevenson gets the better of Paro and is much more active and aggressive than he was against De Los Santos.

“That’s a video from 2019. It makes him look stupid, I believe,” Paro told Sporting News.

“Someone in his camp has obviously leaked something out and it shows that it’s obviously gotten to him.

“But a 45-second clip of 240 minutes – we’ve sparred over 80 rounds – if that’s your best thing, well, fair enough, so be it, if that helps you sleep at night, good on you.

“It’s nothing for me, I’ll take the free exposure from the little bitchiness going on, but I’ve just got my mind set on the job.

“I’ll just let my actions speak for me. I think it’s just stress you don’t need to put on yourself and get involved in.

“Boxing is a very mentally stressful sport as it is. So when I’m not boxing and fighting, I like to kick back and stick to myself.”

Paro, who, along with Stevenson, has sparred with the likes of Devin Haney and Rolly Romero over the course of several camps in Las Vegas, said he’d still work with him again if required.

“We’ve always had nothing but respect for him and his camp,” he added.

“I don’t get involved in the sh*t. I think it’s a bit of schoolyard bullsh*t.

“I’m just going to get rounds in if we need him or if we fight another southpaw and that opportunity’s there, of course, it’d be a no brainer.

“He’s probably one of the best, if not the best, southpaw around. 

“If it’s going to benefit me and my career, of course I’ll get the work in.”

Paro’s is a career which has, unfortunately, stalled in 2023.

After scoring a first-round knockout over Brock Jarvis last October, the Queenslander looked set for a big year.

He was lined up to face Robbie Davies Jnr in a headline slot in Liverpool in March before a routine CT scan picked up an unknown facial fracture, seeing the presiding commission rule him out.

After that disappointment, the 27-year-old secured a long-awaited world title shot, against Regis Pregrais in New Orleans in June.

This time it was an Achilles tendon issue which forced him to withdraw, sidelining him for an extended period and temporarily seeing him relocate to his hometown of Mackay.

“Absolutely heartbreaking. There’s no other words for it,” he said of the missed world title shot.

“I was so devastated. At one stage, it felt like everything was coming to an end. 

“I’ve had a pretty smooth career until this year and two injuries, back-to-back, it definitely tested me mentally.

“I went through hell and back. I was lucky I was around the right people, I was supported by my loved ones up home.

“It tested me, it’s seen how much I really did love the sport and how dedicated I was to it.

“It was just a full reset. It relit the fire in my belly.

“It’s just good to be back and I definitely want to leave all that in the past and keep steamrolling forward.”

Now back fit again, Paro faces Ohio’s Montana Love in San Francisco on December 9 (Dec. 10 in Australia) on the undercard to the WBC super lightweight title bout between Haney and Prograis.

WATCH: Paro vs. Love, live on DAZN

Aussie fans will recognise Love as the man who lost via disqualification when he threw Stevie Spark out of the ring in frustration last October.

Paro hopes to put a difficult run behind him and kick off a world title charge with an emphatic win on a big card.

“I’ll just bring the fight to [Love], he likes a slow, controlled fight, a slow pace,” Paro said of the challenge which awaits in his return.

“We’ve seen with the [Spark] fight, a bit of pressure and he folds, so bring the fight to him. 

“He’s obviously weak in the head a little bit and actions speak louder than words, you’ve seen that in his fight. 

“So we’re going to bring the fight to him. Smart pressure, smart boxing.

“I honestly believe I’m better than him in every aspect, except wrestling.”

After previously being ranked number one in the division with the WBO, Paro is now 11th in line for a shot at the championship – a casualty of his inactivity.

“The Prodigy” is confident one good performance can put him right back at the front of the queue.

“I’m going to get my title shot,” he said

“I’ve proved it time and time again that I belong at the top level and I intend to do that on December 9, too, and stamp my way into a world title into an opposite corner and win it when I get my shot.

“2024, I want a busy year. I want to fight three times next year. 

“I’ve only had one round in two years. I missed the sport and it’s lit a new fire in my belly.”

WATCH: Paro vs. Love, live on DAZN


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