A fascinating spectacle takes centre stage under the bright lights of Las Vegas this weekend as WBC super featherweight champion Oscar Valdez and WBO champion Shakur Stevenson meet in a unification clash which will see both men risk their unbeaten records.
Stevenson is one of the most highly-rated young fighters on the planet right now, but faces a significant test in Mexico’s Valdez, who is looking to silence his critics following a sub-par performance last time out. The undercard also sees Nico Ali Walsh, grandson of Muhammad Ali, make his fifth professional appearance and the next step in lightweight Keyshawn Davis’ blossoming career.
Here’s everything you need to know about a top night of boxing in Sin City…
Where: MGM Grand Garden Arena, Las Vegas
When: Saturday, April 30
How To Watch: Sky Sports Arena. The show will begin at 2am UK time with Stevenson vs Valdez expected at approximately 5am.
Tale of the Tape:
Place Of Birth: Newark, New Jersey
Record: 17-0 (9)
Last Fight: The Rio 2016 silver medallist put in a career best performance to snatch Jamel Herring’s WBO super featherweight strap last October. Stevenson defeated Herring via tenth-round technical knockout after being ahead on all three judges' scorecards to become a two-weight world champion.
Place Of Birth: Nogales, Sonora, Mexico
Record: 30-0 (23)
Last Fight: Valdez made the first defense of his WBC super featherweight title against the 2016 Olympic Gold medalist Robson Conceicao, winning the closely contested bout via unanimous decision.
What They Say:
“My mindset is whatever it takes to win. They’re going to love you if you win, or they’re going to hate you if you lose. I’m not going in there to lose.
“I’m an offense and defensive fighter, so I’m naturally going to put on a show, but I’m not going to stand there and receive none in return.”
"Shakur is a way more defensive fighter, but anything can happen inside the ring.
"I have been through a lot of fights, a lot of wars. You find a way to get him there and force him to get there to start questioning himself. Does he really want it?
"I fought with an injured hand, broken rib and I've been sent to the canvas. There have been times where I was exhausted and I thought I was going to collapse because I was so exhausted in the ring.
"Losing is not an option, That's the only thing in my mind that I have to keep going and forward. It just shows that I've definitely got the heart for this."
Full Card (Subject To Change):
Oscar Valdez vs Shakur Stevenson, WBC & WBO super-featherweight title fight
Keyshawn Davis vs Esteban Sanchez
Nico Ali Walsh vs Alejandro Ibarra
Raymond Muratalla vs Jeremy Hill
Andres Cortes vs Alexis del Bosque
Abdullah Mason vs Luciano Ramos
Troy Isley vs TBA
Charlie Sheehy vs Burnell Jenkins
Antoine Cobb vs Jaylan Phillips
Betfred Odds (Subject To Change):
*18+ | BeGambleAware