Emanuel Navarrete: "We’ll See
Whose Head Comes Off First"
Three-division world champion Emanuel “Vaquero” Navarrete is
ready for an all-Mexican war.
Navarrete puts his WBO junior lightweight world title on the
line against former two-division world champion Oscar Valdez
on Saturday, August 12, at Desert Diamond Arena in Glendale,
Navarrete-Valdez, Raymond Muratalla-Diego Torres and Richard
Torrez Jr.-Willie Jake Jr. will be broadcast live on ESPN,
ESPN Deportes and ESPN+ at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT.
Navarrete (37-1, 31 KOs), the fighting pride of San Juan
Zitlaltepec, captured the WBO junior featherweight world
title by defeating Isaac Dogboe in December 2018. After five
defenses, he moved up to featherweight and defeated Ruben
Villa for the vacant WBO title in October 2020. The
28-year-old defended his crown against Christopher Diaz,
Joet Gonzalez, and Eduardo Baez. In February, he became a
three-division world champion with a ninth-round knockout
victory over Liam Wilson.
Valdez (31-1, 23 KOs), from Nogales, represented Mexico at
the 2008 and 2012 Olympics. The 32-year-old captured his
first world title in July 2016 with a second-round stoppage
win over Matias Rueda. In February 2021, he became a
two-division world champion with a 10th-round knockout
against Miguel Berchelt. Valdez suffered his first loss to
Shakur Stevenson in April 2022 and is coming off a unanimous
decision victory against Adam Lopez in May.
After a recent training session at The BXNG Club in San
Diego, this is what Navarrete said:
"The training camp has been intense. The preparation was
very tough. Fortunately, we were able to carry it out quite
well. I had always done things in a conventional way, but
now we have included a physical trainer, Francisco Javier
Orozco. This fight with Valdez merited that change, and I
will come into this fight much better physically."
"Winning this fight would boost my career significantly.
Personally, I would feel complete. What has been missing in
my career is precisely a victory against someone like
Valdez. It would fill me with pride to be part of such an
iconic fight between Mexicans and come out victorious."
"People know that I throw a lot of punches and that I’m
always in attractive fights. Now, with Valdez, I believe it
will be twice as spectacular. Valdez is a fighter who
doesn't hold back. We always see him moving forward and
"He says he's going to knock my head off, but let's see
whose head comes off first. Let's see what Valdez has to
offer, and let's see how much he can endure and how much I
can endure, too."