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FIGHT PREVIEW: Oscar Valdez vs Scott Quigg

Oscar Valdez puts his WBO Featherweight title on the line and steps up against arguably his most dangerous opponent to date, former World Super Bantamweight Champion, Scott Quigg. This bout has gone somewhat under the radar, given that a certain pound-for-pound elect is fighting in San Antonio, Texas. Even in Quigg's home country of England, the build-up has gone by almost relatively unnoticed, but make no mistake; this is a fight that deserves some due care and attention.

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FIGHT PREVIEW: Oscar Valdez vs Scott Quigg

By Aaron Cooper

Whether you are an old hat or a relative novice to the sport of boxing, you will be familiar with one saying: styles make fights, and this Saturday night at the Stub Hub in Carson City, California, we could be treated to 12 rounds of fireworks.

Oscar Valdez puts his WBO Featherweight title on the line and steps up against arguably his most dangerous opponent to date, former World Super Bantamweight Champion, Scott Quigg. This bout has gone somewhat under the radar, given that a certain pound-for-pound elect, Mikey Garcia, is fighting in San Antonio, Texas on the same night. Even in Quigg's home country of England, the build-up has gone by almost relatively unnoticed, but make no mistake; this is a fight that deserves some due care and attention.

While his last appearance was not the best performance in the boxing ring, it is widely considered that Valdez could certainly reach the upper echelons of the sport. Since winning the title in July 2016, Valdez has gone on to make three successful title defences, picking himself up off of the floor in his last bout against Genesis Servania.

Quigg is still in the process of rebuilding a career following a loss to rival Carl Frampton in his hometown in 2016. Since that loss, he left long term trainer Joe Gallagher for the Wild Card gym and Freddie Roach, winning twice under the trainer's tutelage. 

If you were to believe social media, then you'd be led to think this is an easy fight for Valdez, but this is a real pick 'em kind of fight. Firstly, it's unlikely either fighter is going to have to look very hard for his opponent. Both men have a fan-friendly, all-action style, and as with all offensively minded fighters, both leave themselves open to the counter, so we could be in for a 12-round war.

The challenger has a phenomenal work rate, quite possibly the best of any British boxer currently fighting today. At his very best, Quigg can box well, as you'd expect from a former world champion. He's durable, strong and if you let him set the pace he can punish you. But he does his best work on the inside. At his worst, Quigg does have some defensive flaws. He applies a high guard and has a tendency to lean in with his right hand, leaving himself open. We've seen in recent times he's taken unnecessary shots and he simply cannot do that against Valdez.

The champion, Valdez, is probably the better boxer. He has shown tremendous power and hand speed on his rise to the top of the featherweight division. He too possesses a work rate worthy of the very best in the sport. Expect to see Valdez trying to test out his favourite combination out early, that of course being the overhand right, left hook, overhand right. If Quigg's chin can't hold up, then it could be an early night for the champion.

How can the fight be won?

Both men are pressure fighters. So should either of them elect to try and box, and Valdez is the most likely to do so, look to see either man establish a jab, as it is key in dealing with pressure fighters. Also, look out for either man throwing the right cross that pressure fighters are susceptible to. A simple jab-cross can make your man think again. You need to keep on the outside of a pressure fighter; a lead hook and rear uppercut are two of the best weapons you can possess if your opponent gets in mid-range. But look out for those clinches!

Prediction?

Draw - people are writing Quigg off, but he has the skills and the power to keep Valdez honest. This could be an early contender for FOTY!