April 30, 2022 will be remembered as one of the great nights in recent boxing history. Over in New York, Franchon Crews-Dezurn secured the undisputed super middleweight title. Not long thereafter, Amanda Serrano and Katie Taylor went to war at Madison Square Garden. As all of that was going on, the grandson of Muhammad Ali, Nico Ali Walsh, scored a first-round knockout and impressed fans in Sin City. Moments later, Keyshawn Davis cemented himself as one of the future stars of boxing by stopping Esteban Sanchez in the sixth round. Closing out the night, Oscar Valdez and Shakur Stevenson fought for the unified super featherweight title and a spot in the pound-for-pound rankings.
Oscar Valdez and Shakur Stevenson entered Saturday’s bout after earning pivotal victories in major fights. Fourteen months ago, Valdez put together a career-defining performance against Miguel Berchelt to win the WBC Super Featherweight Championship. Meanwhile, Stevenson was busy earning the WBO Super Featherweight Championship in Atlanta, Georgia. With the momentum that each fighter had built, it made for a major showdown in Sin City.
The fight got off to a fast start as Stevenson used the first round to counter Valdez multiple times. In response, Valdez used his trainer Eddie Reynoso’s advice to begin taking away a few of Stevenson’s favorite punch angles and throwing a few straight right hands in a row. Most importantly, he committed himself to throwing shots at Stevenson’s torso. As the fifth and sixth rounds progressed, Stevenson was able to keep Valdez at a distance and land a number of power shots as well as score a knockdown. Valdez was able to put together one last effort in the 10th round, but it wasn’t enough to get Stevenson out of his comfort zone. At the end of 12 rounds, Stevenson earned a unanimous decision victory.
ALL HAIL THE KING ??@ShakurStevenson x #ValdezStevenson pic.twitter.com/N2tPxzTmn5
— Top Rank Boxing (@trboxing) May 1, 2022