Two-time Olympian Oscar Valdez (28-0, 22 KOs) is motivated that most observers are stating that it's very difficult for him to defeat WBC super featherweight world champion Miguel 'Alacran' Berchelt (37-1, 33 KOs).
The will collide on February 20 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.
Valdez, 30-years-old, will seek his second division title, after being the WBO featherweight world champion, with six triumphant defenses.
“I grew up with the fights of Erik Morales and Marco Antonio Barrera,” Valdez stressed to Jose Luis Camarillo.
"And I already lived through the final moments of Mike Tyson. The best fought the best. Now it is known that some fighters turn away from others because of money. I don't like that. I chose to fight Berchelt... it is the toughest, it is a very attractive fight for the public and, most importantly, to have a war and fight for the title of my dreams, the WBC.”
Berchelt lived for several years in Hermosillo, the same city where Valdez lived. The two boxers knew each other in the amateurs.
“Since we were amateurs, he was a national champion and I was in international competitions. The fight never happened [back then], he was a little frustrated that he couldn't represent the country in the Olympics and I was number one," Valdez said.
"We met several times in the same places, in restaurants, he is a great guy inside and outside the ring, but from the moment our fight was signed, the friendship went out the window, that rivalry returns, who is braver, who has more heart, who is more of a warrior - I think I am and I will prove it on February 20, I am very hungry, it is my dream.
"The public has not yet seen my best abilities. I always study an opponent for a long time, I know I have everything to beat Berchelt. He is difficult, tough, he has fought with the best: against (Takashi) Miura, he took the title from (Francisco) Vargas, he beat Jason Sosa, tremendous fighters. Berchelt is a tremendous fighter. My mentality has made me win, I am a very disciplined boxer, I never give up on fulfilling my dream, I may have a hurt rib, a hurt hand, a (broken) jaw, they may have dropped me to the canvas, but my desire to succeed has helped me get ahead in those fights, my amateur career has helped me grow as a professional."