Home Boxing News Emanuel Navarrete open to Oscar Valdez rematch after winning barnburner on points

Emanuel Navarrete open to Oscar Valdez rematch after winning barnburner on points

Emanuel Navarrete (right) lands on Oscar Valdez. Photo credit: Mikey Williams/Top Rank

WBO super featherweight champion Emanuel ‘Vaquero’ Navarrete 38-1 (31) scored a signature win with a 12-round unanimous decision victory over Oscar Valdez 31-2 (23) at the Desert Diamond Arena in Glendale, Arizona on Saturday night.

The all-Mexican showdown was being billed as a fight to rival the classic trilogy between Marco Antonio Barrera and Erik Morales.

Although the willing scrap didn’t succeed in making it to those lofty heights, it was nevertheless an entertaining battle that didn’t leave the 10,246 fans in attendance disappointed.

Navarrete, who has won world titles at super bantamweight and featherweight before jumping up to 130-pounds this year, got the jump on Valdez early with his long, rangy shots and awkward angles.

The 32-year-old Valdez, a former 126-pound and 130-pound champion in his own right, came on in the middle rounds but Navarrete rallied down the stretch despite suffering an injury to his right hand in the ninth and closed out the championship rounds strongly.

Valdez’s right eye was almost swollen shut at the end of the contest and his face was a mask of bumps and bruises. By contrast, Navarrete’s face was unmarked.

All three judges award the bout to Navarrete by scores of 119-109, 118-110 and 116-112.

“I feel happy to have been part of this card and of this next great chapter of Mexican boxing history,” Navarrete said in his post-fight interview. “I am happy and appreciate Oscar for the great fight that we delivered.”

He added that the hand injury didn’t hamper him too much.

“There was some inflammation in my right hand. And the more I used it, the more it hurt. But I had to overcome it,” Navarrete said.

Despite the clear-cut victory, talks of a rematch began almost immediately. Navarrete is open to doing it all again.

“I think the people can best talk about what they saw,” he said. “They saw the fight tonight. I was here fighting with Valdez. And I feel good. Thank God, I won. I appreciate what he did in the ring. He is a Mexican warrior. If the people want a rematch, they will demand it.”

Two-time Olympian Valdez was shattered by the result.

“He is a warrior,” Valdez said. “I tried my best. We gave it our best. He is a warrior. He is a true champion.

“I’m sorry I disappointed everyone. I feel terrible. I wanted to give you all a great fight. I hope you enjoyed the fight. I hope to return strong.”

Both Navarrete and Valdez were predicting a classic battle before the bout.

“We all know that this fight is raising a lot of expectations,” Navarrete said. “It would be totally fraudulent if Valdez and I didn’t give 100 percent in this fight. We all know that everyone expects a war in the ring. We have all that it takes to make for a great fight.”

Valdez said: “This fight means the world to me… I want to win. I want to be a world champion again. I want to show the fans a good fight. So, I am ready.”