Why is Shakur Stevenson fighting on a Thursday?

In terms of boxing hotbeds, it’s usually Japan that fight fans can count on to provide a mid-week event. Well, the trend spreads out to Las Vegas when unbeaten star Shakur Stevenson takes on Edwin De Los Santos for the vacant WBC lightweight title. The 12-round bout, plus undercard action, takes place at the T-Mobile Arena on Thursday, November 16.

WATCH: Shakur Stevenson vs. Edwin De Los Santos, exclusively on ESPN+

The 26-year-old Stevenson (20-0, 10 KOs) has already annexed world titles at featherweight and super featherweight. Currently rated No. 10 in The Sporting News’ pound-for-pound ratings, the Newark, New Jersey lefty is one of the finest pure boxers in the world today. Among his signature victories are Jamel Herring, Oscar Valdez, and Robson Conceicao.

De Los Santos (16-1, 14 KOs) is a dangerous southpaw from the Dominican Republic. The 24-year-old contender happened to be in the right place at the right time when American fighter Frank Martin refused to meet Stevenson for the WBC 135-pound title that had been relinquished by Devin Haney. De Los Santos, rated No. 6 by the WBC, was available to fill the void.

Despite being the most popular attraction for combat sports in the world, the city of Las Vegas will be playing host to Formula 1 on Saturday, November 18 with the race taking place at 10 p.m. local time.

The race will take place on a temporary circuit, which includes The Strip and will encircle the Sphere Arena. This will be the first time that the Formula 1 has taken place in the city since 1982.

With Top Rank low on options to secure Stevenson a date in the lead up to Christmas, it made sense to make a mid-week appearance.

Prior to weekend gambling in Las Vegas becoming the hot spot for promoters to stage big fights, mid-week bouts were the norm.

Muhammad Ali vs. Joe Frazier 1 took place on a Monday night at Madison Square Garden. Sugar Ray Leonard faced off against Thomas Hearns for welterweight supremacy on a Wednesday night at Caesars Palace.

It’s been a long time since a fighter of Stevenson’s stature has competed on a weekday in Las Vegas.

It’s doubtful that big fights will continue to take place on weekdays, particularly in Las Vegas. In the case of Stevenson vs. De Los Santos, it’s been a necessity more than anything else.

Under normal circumstances, casinos will be more likely to pay for weekend fights because it’s easier to draw people to events when they’re off work.

Stevenson vs. De Los Santos will be on Thursday, November 16, days before the Formula 1 Las Vegas Grand Prix. The main card starts at 10:30 p.m. ET, while Stevenson and De Los Santos should enter the ring around midnight ET, depending on how long the undercard fights last. 

MORE: All you need to know about Shakur Stevenson vs. Edwin De Los Santos

The Stevenson vs. De Los Santos main card will air on ESPN and ESPN+ in the U.S. The undercard will air exclusively on ESPN+. 

Starting in October, you can pay $10.99 for a monthly subscription to ESPN+ or buy an annual subscription for $109.99.

WATCH: Shakur Stevenson vs. Edwin De Los Santos, exclusively on ESPN+

The fight is in Las Vegas at the T-Mobile Arena. Home to the Golden Knights and several UFC shows, the arena can hold up to 20,000 people. 

Per BetMGM, Stevenson is the -1400 favourite while De Los Santos is the +700 underdog. The draw is -2500. 

MORE: How to bet on combat sports

Why is Shakur Stevenson vs Edwin De Los Santos WBC world title fight taking place on a Thursday?

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