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Oscar Valdez: Coming Back Hungry On Saturday

By: Sean Crose

It was doubtful anyone expected Oscar Valdez to go down in the second round of his fight against Adam Lopez back in 2019. Lopez, after all, was essentially a last minute opponent for the popular Valdez. Still, down Valdez went, courtesy of a nasty Lopez left. Valdez managed to beat the count and ultimately win the fight, courtesy of a seventh round stoppage, but those moments on the mat stayed in the collective memory. Now, the 30-1 Valdez has a shot at erasing that memory as he battles the 16-4 Lopez once again this Saturday night at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.

The match, which is essentially the co-main event on the Devin Haney-Vasyl Lomachenko pay per view card, is important to the 32 year old Valdez for a variety of reasons. Besides squaring off again against Lopez, Valdez will also be fighting for the first time since suffering his only defeat, which came at the gloved hands of Shakur Stevenson over a year ago. Not only did Shakur place an L on Valdez’ otherwise perfect record, he walked out of the ring that night with Valdez’ WBC super featherweight title in his possession, courtesy of a unanimous decision nod from the judges.

Valdez, needless to say, wants another crack at title glory. Should he best the 27 year old Lopez for the second time in this weekend’s scheduled 10 rounder, he’ll find himself getting closer to another chance at that glory. “We want the best, ” Valdez recently told FightHype. “We want the WBO, the WBC, the WBA, the IBF (belts). The sky’s the limit…but for that to happen, I gotta go against Adam Lopez and finish him first.” Indeed. Valdez has good reason to be confident. The fighter may be 32 now, but 32 ain’t what it used to be in boxing.

Plus there’s the matter of experience. In the course of his career, the likeable multi-division titlist Valdez has bested the likes of Scott Quigg and Miguel Berchelt – no one’s definition of slouches. What’s more, when one considers the fact the one loss on Valdez’ resume came from Stevenson – a man some are saying is one of the best pound for pound fighters on earth – it becomes none too hard to picture Valdez once again having a at least one world title in his possession. As everyone knows, big things can happen when one returns to one’s winning ways.

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