Navarrete vs Valdez: “The Action Will Start In The Early Rounds”

Navarrete Says The Fight Will Favor the Early-Rounds Winner

Emanuel Navarrete says early rounds will be key against Oscar Valdez
Emanuel Navarrete says early rounds will be key against Oscar Valdez | credit: Mikey Williams/Top Rank

Emanuel Navarrete Says Early Rounds Will Be Critical vs Valdez

On August 12, Emanuel “Vaquero” Navarrete (37-1, 31 KOs) defends the WBO junior lightweight title against former two-division champion Oscar Valdez (31-1, 23 KOs). Occurring at the Desert Diamond Arena in Glendale, Arizona, the defending champion is promising a night of fireworks and believes the early rounds will be critical to success.


During an exclusive interview with the outlet Boxing News, Navarrete said he feels the fight comes at just the right moment.

(Translated from Spanish) “I think that we are at a great time in our career with Valdez, a very high-level fighter. People have been pressuring to make this fight.

Now that it’s been made, we think that it’s the perfect moment to deliver this fight. So, we’re going to both come out with a lot of strength and desire and with that required level to make this a Mexican battle.”

Vaquero won the then-vacant WBO title with a ninth-round stoppage over Liam Wilson in February 2023. It was far from an easy win for the 28-year-old from Mexico City, Mexico. Wilson gave him fits as he put Navarrete on the deck and hurt him in round four before rallying to get the win.


He can’t afford a slow start against Valdez. The challenger is an experienced, savvy veteran who can box and punch. Understanding this reality, Navarrete said the key to victory will be who can set the tone in the early rounds.

“I think it’ll start in the early rounds. Valdez comes with the desire to exchange, and I’m also predicting that we’re going to come out in the early rounds and that’s when the action is going to start.

[…] Whoever wins the first part and wins those early rounds will have an advantage in the end.”

The champion and challenger are not afraid to stand and trade. Defense is not their strong suit. Many observers are predicting this will be an all-action battle.

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About Mike W.1996 Articles
Mike is the host of boxing podcast "Pound 4 Pound Boxing Report" and is a Senior Writer for