By: Hans Themistode
Oscar Valdez walked into his contest against Miguel Berchelt virtually without a single soul believing in him. However, by the time he left the ring a few minutes later, just about everyone was riding his coattails.
From the moment the opening bell rang, it was clear that Valdez was simply the better fighter. With knockdowns scored in both the fourth and ninth rounds, Valdez ended things with one final punch in the tenth.
Just about everyone is lauding the performance of Valdez. But in the case of former multiple division belt holder Timothy Bradley, he’s taken his praise to a whole other level.
“That type of performance that he put on, that’s hall of fame,” said Bradley on the Ak and Barak Show. “To me, he wrote his ticket to the hall of fame.”
For years now, Bradley sat back and watched Berchelt terrorize the super featherweight division. With 16 knockout wins in his past 17 fights, most expected Valdez to simply become another victim. With that said, they were all proven wrong as Valdez had little trouble dealing with the power and aggression of Berchelt.
In Bradley’s opinion, Valdez can hang up his gloves this very minute, then sit back and relax as his name is called to be enshrined into the hall of fame. Valdez’s name being mentioned amongst the greats is justified not because of his championship run at 126 pounds or even because of the countless back and forth battles we’ve all seen him in.
No, to Bradley, Valdez deserves the highest of praises because of his willingness to face someone like Berchelt, to begin with. Other big-name fighters, including a certain young star from Baltimore, Bradley believes was simply too scared to step up to the plate.
“Two division world champion, we’ve seen him in wars. He fought the bogeyman in the division. Nobody wanted to face this guy, not even Gervonta Davis wanted to face him, trust me on this. The guys that were at 130 avoided Berchelt because he was a big puncher, he was awkward, big and physically strong so a lot of guys strayed away from him.”