Oscar Valdez wants Shakur, Tank or Herring – Frampton winner

By Boxing News - 02/23/2021 - Comments

By Jeff Aronow: Oscar Valdez has a big decision to make for his next fight in which of the popular fighters at 130 to take on. He says he’s interested in facing Shakur Stevenson, Gervonta ‘Tank’ Davis, or the Jamel Herring vs. Carl Frampton fight winner.

Oscar Valdez (29-0, 23 KOs) is coming off a big 10th round knockout win over WBC super featherweight champion Miguel Berchelt (37-2, 33 KOs) last Saturday night in ‘The Bubble’ at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Valdez’s promoters at Top Rank will need to help him come up with a good choice. Gervonta Davis is arguably the best money fight for the newly crowned WBC super featherweight champion Valdez.

Lopez targeting Shakur, Tank & Herring-Frampton winner

“Now I have a bigger responsibility because I’m a champion and a target for a lot of boxers out there,” said Oscar Valdez to the Pug and Copp Boxing Show. “I’ve got to keep the same hunger that I had and stay in the gym and stay focused and stayed disciplined.

Image: Oscar Valdez wants Shakur, Tank or Herring - Frampton winner

“Without a doubt, Shakur Stevenson has been talking for a while already, and he’s been calling me out,” said Valdez. “I said, ‘Let me win this fight first, and we’ll see who’s up next.’

There’s him [Shakur], there’s Gervonta, and there’s the winner of the Carl Frampton vs. Jermall Herring. Any of them.

“I’m making it clear; I’m not scared of fighting no other fighter. I fought the one feared boxer [Berchelt] that nobody wanted to fight at 130 pounds. I’m the champion, and I’ll fight whoever. I’m not scared of fighting no other fighter.

“My mindset and my worth ethic, that’s what gets me through all these fights,” said Valdez in how he’d beat Shakur.

“I’ve had tough fights before, but losing is never an option for me. I work hard. Chavez had options, and even in my eyes, Floyd Mayweather had a loss.

“I thought he lost to Jose Luis Castillo. No one is invincible; I don’t care what anyone says.

“There’s always going to be one mistake that can make a fighter beatable. I never train hard to be #2. I always train to be #1,” said Valdez.

Shakur Stevenson is the easiest of those fights to make right now for Valdez’s next contest. It appears that Stevenson is no longer interested in facing the Jamel Herring vs. Carl Frampton winner.

Berchelt can come again at 135

“Once he got up. I wish him nothing but the best. I got to go see him, and I told him that I was sure that he was going to be champion again, maybe not at 130 pounds,” said Valdez.

“And I know he struggles to make weight. But I’m sure he can make 135 and carry that heavy punch. He hits very hard, and I wish him nothing but the best.

“He was the favorite,” Valdez said about Berchelt. “There were a lot of things that made this better than my first world title fight.

“The most important thing is people were counting me out. Ever since I fought Scott Quigg and got my jaw broken, people were already retiring me.

“They said I had a glass jaw and that I wasn’t advanced, and I was with Eddy Reynoso. A lot of things.

“They were taking me out of the picture. I saw the new generation come, and I felt a little left out.

“So adding that to me being the underdog and winning the WBC world title, and fighting a great champion in Miguel Berchelt, it just makes this the biggest win of my career,” said Valdez.

Berchelt will need to make up his mind to keep draining down to 130 or move up to 135 or 140. Valdez believes Berchelt can be just as effective at 135 as he previously was at 130.

Berchelt may need to consider moving up to 140 if he wants to be at full strength because he looks too big to be fighting at 135.

Miguel brought the best out of Valdez

“I know a lot of people are going to approach me now. I’m an icon back at home, and I’ve got to be careful,” said Oscar Valdez.

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“Yeah, I was conscious that my last three fights before the Berchelt fight that I didn’t look my best, and that was getting really frustrated to me because I worked really hard.

“For one reason or another, the fights were doing justice to what we were doing in training camp.

“I was getting upset; I was getting made hearing the commentators and seeing the fans not very happy with my performances.

“I was working very hard doing everything that Eddy was telling me, and it wasn’t working in the fight.

“But I knew this fight against Berchelt would bring the best out of me. I had to rise with the competition. In the gym, we have to work on different things, so I turned southpaw I used my legs.

“I said this before; I don’t just brawl. I can also box if necessary. We’ve proved that.

“We’ve done it in the gym, and I finally showed it in a fight against Berchelt. I turned southpaw, and I was outboxing him.

“Then I would change and use my legs in some of the rounds and get him frustrated to the point where he would make that one mistake, and I would take advantage of it,” Oscar said about Berchelt.

This was Valdez’s best performance of his career and the most complete effort from start to finish. He didn’t take the type of punishment that he’d absorbed in many of his fights against lesser opposition than Berchelt.

The strategy was to frustrate Berchelt

“It worked out perfectly in the fight,” continued Valdez. “We already had this strategy that we were going to get him frustrated, and he was going to make that one mistake.

Image: Oscar Valdez wants Shakur, Tank or Herring - Frampton winner

“He [Berchelt] did it in the fourth round. He was getting frustrated, and I heard him say several times that he was going to look for the knockout.

“That was key for my team and me because that made me realize that he was going to look for a big knockout; he would have an opening.

“If he had an opening, we could take advantage of it. I caught him by surprise. All fight, Miguel Berchelt was dangerous.

“I felt like I was hitting a rock wall every time I would hit him. He just felt really strong.

“I felt that if I could land one big shot, I could potentially send him to the canvas. And I just had to wait for him to keep making mistakes, and I’d like that one clean shot.

“I love the fact the things that I was working on in the gym, they turned out perfectly what I said I was going to do,” said Lopez.

Berchelt never recovered after being dropped in the fourth round. He wasn’t the same for the remainder of the fight. Letting it continue led to Berchelt getting hurt repeatedly.

For that, you got to look at his trainer for failing to step in to stop the content in the fifth because his legs were gone.

Valdez glad the fight wasn’t halted in 4th

“I’m kind of glad that they didn’t stop it in the fourth round because Team Canelo and Eddy Reynoso get a lot of hate,” said Oscar Valdez. “A lot of people don’t like that I went with Eddy Reynoso.

“They always look for that one excuse saying that Canelo pays his opponents, does this, does that, and pays the referee. They always make up different things.

“If they had stopped the fight in the fourth round, a lot of people would have been unhappy and said, ‘They stopped it too early.’

“I heard that with Adam Lopez, and I was getting criticized for it. That bothers me because I work really hard for all of this.

“Nothing is given to us. So I’m kind of glad that they didn’t stop it in the fourth round, and I’m kind of glad that it ended the way it did.

“As I said, I don’t like saying this because I don’t wish him nothing bad but the way that we did in making it very clear that I was a better fighter that night, and I’m just happy with the result,” said Valdez.

If the fight had been stopped in the fourth, many boxing fans would have complained that Berchelt might have been able to come back to beat Valdez.

Oscar was surprised by his KO shot

“I surprised myself with this shot,” said Valdez about his knockout punch in the tenth round against Berchelt.

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“There’s always room to improve, but the knockout was even impressive to myself. I couldn’t believe it that I finally accomplished my dream in that way.

“I knew once I landed it, I knew he wasn’t going to recover from it, and I knew the fight was over. That’s why I was so happy.

“Not realizing at the moment while I was celebrating that he wasn’t waking up. As I said before, he’s a great guy; he’s a great friend. I don’t wish him nothing bad,” said Oscar.

It’s unclear why Valdez was surprised by the KO shot in the 10th round, as Berchelt was in bad shape during the entire round.

Additionally, the punishment that Berchelt took in the 9th round was a sign that he wasn’t going to make it another round.

It was obvious from looking at the condition that Berchelt was in at the end of the ninth round that he wasn’t going to get through the 10th without getting knocked out.