Bruce “Shu Shu” Carrington (10-0, 6 KOs) is among boxing's most talented fighters and rising stars.
In 2023, the 26-year-old Brooklyn native had a career-defining year.
The featherweight prospect fought five times against solid opponents, resulting in handing fellow prospect Brandon Chambers the first loss of his career and a knockout win against Jason Sanchez, who until that point had never been knocked out.
No wonder the talented Brooklynite was named the topped prospect of the year by The Ring Magazine, ESPN, and our NYFights.com.
The rising featherweight has broken through boxing’s top-ten rankings and holds the number eight spot on the WBO’s list.
NYFights recently talked to Carrington about what fans can expect in 2024 after having such an exceptional year in 2023.
The Brownsville native smiled when we informed him he was named our 2023 top prospect. “Thank you, it means a lot to me,” said Carrington.
Shu-Shu’s first fight this year is scheduled for February 16th in the famed Madison Square Garden.
He will square off against Bernard Torres (18-1, 8KOs), 27, from Norway by way of the Philippines.
So, what makes Torres the best opponent for Carrington to kick off the 2024 boxing year, I asked.
“He's only had one defeat and eighteen wins. I feel like this fight right here is a step up. This is a big step for me to be able to do this and do it at home. I believe we're also fighting for a couple of belts.
“I think it’s the NBAF and the WBO Intercontinental titles. We are preparing with 100% effort. We're ready for this guy right now! At this point, I'm just waiting for the 16th to come. We are locked and loaded and ready to go!” said the young contender excitedly.
Carrington fought five times last year. I was curious about which fight he considered his toughest and what lessons he took away from it.
“I wouldn’t say that I had tough fights in 2023, to be honest,” said Bruce, laughing confidently. “The most mentally challenging one was my fight in January of 2023. I was going through some personal things but knew I had to lock in to get that victory. That showed me that I’m able to lock in when I need to lock in. I’m able to still get the job done even if other things are going wrong.”
In a recent interview with Bad Left Hook, Bruce said, “I’ve graduated from prospect to contender, and this year, everyone sees my full arsenal.” It seemed to me that Shu-Shu unleashed his complete arsenal against his opponents last year. What was he holding back?
“Man, you guys can't get everything all at once,” said Shu-Shu lightheartedly.
“But I've noticed that some opponents cannot get certain things out of me. I give them what I call my primary style, and they can't handle it. I'm able to get them out of there or dominate them. They could not get me to bring other things (boxing skills) out of my bag.
“I want to entertain the fans a little more. I’ll bring the tools out of my bag and show everybody what more I'm capable of doing. So, I'm going to treat you all for sure in 2024.”
Brownsville, Brooklyn, has produced some of boxing's greatest and most fascinating boxers. Carrington is poised to join the storied history of boxers native to Brownsville.
What does it mean to you to be from Brownsville, and how has that shaped, if any, who you are in the ring?
“It means everything to be from Brownsville. Come on, it's Brownsville! We got Mike Tyson, Zab Judah, Riddick, Bowe, and Shannon Briggs, to name a few. We have seven world champions to come out of this small neighborhood.
“Coming out of Brownsville is a big deal for me as a boxer. It's helped me a lot in boxing because coming up with the things I've lived with, you got to build tough skin. You can't be weak. It's either you eat, or you're going to get eaten.
“That's the type of mentality that I have to have to go into that ring. Being from Brownsville, I developed a killer instinct,” said Carrington.
Carrington wants to keep busy in 2024 and fight at least five times. However, the highly regarded prospect has his sights dialed on larger targets. “I want to fight all the champions. I want to fight everybody that they say is the best,” said Carrington to NYFights.
Shu-Shu Carrington’s’ talent is not limited only to the ring. The young boxer can also add actor to his list of talents.
Carrington has appeared in two movies. He recently appeared in “The Featherweight.” It is a biopic about the legendary Hall of Fame fighter Willie Pep.
Bruce Carrington costars alongside Hollywood stars like James Madio (Band of Brothers), Stephen Lang (Avatar), and Ron Livingston (Office Space).
Carrington plays a young boxer named Goose. In a sparring session portrayed in the movie, Goose gets the better of Pep, who has been out of boxing for some time. Here is what Bruce said about his experience playing the part of Goose.
“Such a great experience, man. I'm so happy that you brought that up. I was blessed to be a part of the film The Featherweight. My character (Goose) was getting Willie Pep back in the mix because Willie Pep was out of it (out of boxing for a while). So, the sparring partner (Goose) was putting hands on him (Pep),” said Carrington, laughing.
Carrington continued, “If you ever hear about these sparring wars, on how this person got out on this person, or how Errol Spence got out on Mayweather, you don’t know what’s going on in that person’s life around that time.
”It could be their first time sparring coming back (after a layoff) or their first sparring session in camp- anything can be happening in their life. People (boxers) have bad days.
“A guy like, Willie Pep, a freaking legend in the game, is getting touched up by a young guy like Goose. It happens, man! I'm glad they put that in the movie because it gives fans a perspective that we (boxers) have those days.”
In addition to the two movies, Carrington is featured in a documentary called “Brownsville Born,” which streams on brownswilleborn.com
My Take: Bruce Shu-Shu Carrington had a fantastic year in 2023, and I don't expect anything less from him in 2024.
Bruce Carrington is precisely the kind of boxer that American boxing needs. Yes, I said needs.
There was a time in American sports when boxers were quickly recognized by all sports fans, even casual boxing fans.
Bruce Carrington is talented, tenacious, and, more importantly, active. Not only is he active, but he puts on impressive performances. Each outing is better than the last and against progressively tougher opposition.
Outside the ring, Bruce's talent transcends to the entertainment business. His smile brightens a room, and his charisma captivates viewers.
He has everything that made boxers like Muhammad Ali, Sugar Ray Leonard, and Oscar De La Hoya global superstars.
They were all viciously talented in the ring, and satiated boxing fans lust for beautiful violence. Additionally, they were gentle and charming enough to star in movies and commercials and appear on magazine covers, appealing to a different demographic of fans.
Sadly, today, America’s “boxing stars” aren’t active enough or are pricing themselves so highly that they inhibit the matches the American fans want to see.
Therefore, boxing doesn't appeal to casual sports fans, and frankly, some of us hardcore fans, too. Boxers like Bruce Carrington, with continued success, can bring American boxing back to its glory years.