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Valdez defeats Lopez in featherweight debut


Valdez defeats Lopez in featherweight debut

Mikey Williams/Top Rank

Valdez defeats Lopez in featherweight debut

Oscar Valdez’s featherweight debut was a tough one as he overcame getting knocked down to stop late-replacement Adam Lopez in an entertaining main event in front of a fired-up crowd at The Chelsea inside The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas Saturday Night on ESPN+.

Lopez took the bout Friday afternoon after Valdez’s original opponent, Andres Gutierrez, missed weight by 11 pounds. The thirty hours Valdez of preparation was noticed from the onset as a game Lopez was outboxing Valdez in the early rounds. So much so that Lopez knocked Valdez down with a left uppercut in the second round.

Once Valdez got off the deck from there is where he slowly made the adjustment. Valdez would rally to knock down Lopez (13-2) with a left hook his own in the seventh. Ultimately leading to a flurry of punches, which caused referee Russell Mora to stop the bout with seven seconds remaining in the round.

Everyone watching this live on social last night, and I concur with them is that this was a lousy stoppage by Mora. Every bad referee stoppage is going to be qualified for a long time with “in the light of recent events” on broadcasts, which everyone is just going to have to accept it for what it is. I thought Lopez was still okay to make the bell.

This bout was a WBC world title eliminator, Valdez is now in line to face champion Miguel Berchelt, who was in attendance for the fight.

“I was very surprised. I take my hat off to Adam Lopez. He’s a great fighter, great warrior, just like his father {the late Hector Lopez} was,” Valdez said. I just got hit. This is boxing. I prepared myself for two, three months for Gutierrez, but that’s no excuse. This kid is a warrior.

“Berchelt is a true champion inside the ring and outside the ring. Fans love him. That’s the one I want to fight. He has that WBC belt, and he’s trying to take it back home.”

Berchelt and Valdez met in the ring, and it was pointed out by analyst Tim Bradley the size differential as they embraced for Valdez’s victory. This fight looks to be the next matchup for both as we wait for when and where these two will meet in the ring for 2020.

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Marquis Johns is a unknown humorist and avid boxing fan. His love for the sweet science goes back to when matches were 15 rounds and has been covering fights since closed-circuit pay-per-views. Everybody has a plan until they get punched in the mouth is not only a quote by Mike Tyson, it's also a pretty good reminder to keep your guard up.

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