Shakur Stevenson claims he is boxing’s next big superstar while Oscar Valdez wants to be considered as a Mexican great.
The two men talked the talk just a few days out from their highly anticipated super-featherweight unification showdown in Las Vegas on Saturday night.
Stevenson, the WBO champion, has already accused Valdez of dodging a fight against him in the past but now gets the opportunity he’s been waiting for.
“This fight is three years in the making,” said the 24-year-old.
“Everyone knows that I’ve wanted to fight Oscar Valdez since 2019 when he vacated his belt at 126 instead of fighting me. He avoided me for as long as he could, but now is the perfect time for this fight and the fans are in for a show when we finally step into the ring.
“I am the best 130-pound fighter in the world, and I will prove it when I beat Oscar Valdez and become unified champion. I won’t stop there, though. I want to become an undisputed champion at 130, and beating Oscar Valdez is the next step.
“The world hasn’t seen everything that Shakur Stevenson can do in a boxing ring yet. I am boxing’s next superstar, and my performance on April 30 is going to prove it.”
Valdez, the WBC champion, and betting underdog will need to display a career best performance to topple the supremely talented Stevenson and the Mexican is willing to lay everything on the line to get the win.
“The odds are against me, and everyone thinks that he will walk all over me, but just like against Berchelt, I will use that as motivation. I know I have a tough fight in front of me, but this is not something that I haven’t done before. I have worked very hard in the gym, and as always, I’m going to give it my best and leave it all in the ring. Like we say in Mexico, I’m willing to die on the line just to win. That’s all that matters to me.”
The 31-year-old from Sonora says this weekend’s fight will be a chess match and not the war he wants to give the fans. Valdez has ambitions on being on pound-for-pound lists but more importantly to him he wants to be considered among the pantheon of Mexican boxing greats.
“Ever since I was a kid, I have dreamed of being the main event at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. It just sounds beautiful Sounds like you made it. This is the major leagues,” said Valdez.
“I’m enjoying this journey of greatness. When I win this fight, I will be one step closer to being on the pound-for-pound list, and more importantly, I will be a step closer to accomplishing my dream of being considered one of the best fighters in Mexican boxing history. I want my name to be among all these great Mexican fighters, like Morales, Barrera, Marquez, and Chavez. For that to happen, I need to win this fight.”