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Oscar Valdez Resumes Training After Injury

Oscar Valdez Resumes Training After Injury

Boxing News

Oscar Valdez Resumes Training After Injury

Mikey Williams/Top Rank

Oscar Valdez Resumes Training After Injury

When former junior lightweight and featherweight titlist Oscar Valdez suffered an undisclosed injury late last year it forced him to withdraw from a fight with Emanuel Navarrete for the vacant WBO junior lightweight title.

They had been scheduled to meet on Friday night in the Top Rank Boxing on ESPN main event in Glendale, Arizona. But, when Valdez dropped out, he was replaced by Australia’s Liam Wilson, and Valdez was on hand to watch them do battle.

During the stream of preliminary bouts on ESPN+, Valdez detailed what happened to him for the first time.
“I wish I had a story to tell, I wish I had a good story, maybe I fell off my horse,” Valdez said. “Maybe my alligator bit me. Maybe my dog bit me, something. But it was a simple fall.”

Valdez slipped on wet steps and hurt his back and ribs.

“I should have taken a longer break, but went back into sparring sessions, got hit with a body shot and broke my rib again,” Valdez said. “So it was a rib injury. I tried to continue camp. I tried to continue working out but it was literally impossible. I couldn’t breath. A rib injury is very hurtful. I just couldn’t continue.”

Valdez said he is healed now and looking forward to challenging for the 130-pound belt against the Navarrete-Wilson winner in his next fight if it can be arranged for the spring. If not, Valdez said he would take an interim bout and seek the winner in the fall in a fight Top Rank would like to make.

“Now I’m great. There’s a lot of mixed emotions because I should have been fighting (Friday night) against Navarrete,” Valdez said. “Now I’m healthy, now I’m ready to go. I’ve been in the gym, I’ve been working out and I’m waiting for the winner. That’s what I want next.”

Valdez (30-1, 23 KOs), 32, of Mexico, has been out of action since April, when he got knocked down and lost a lopsided decision to Shakur Stevenson in a junior lightweight title unification fight at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas

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Since 2000, award-winning reporter Dan Rafael has covered boxing full time and been ringside for thousands of fights, first for five years at USA Today and then for 15 years at ESPN, where he wrote and appeared on various television, radio and streaming programs. In 2013, Dan was honored by the Boxing Writers Association of America with the Nat Fleischer award for career excellence in boxing journalism. Dan brings his great insight to the Big Fight Weekend site, podcast and more!

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