Two time former Olympian, Oscar Valdez (8-0, 8 KO's) is giving the boxing world plenty to talk about. The speedy power puncher from Nogales, Mexico has impressed from his very first bout and is quickly gaining a following. 23 year old Valdez will be taking on Samuel Sanchez this Saturday as part of the Chavez vs. Vera 2 card. The main event will air on HBO from San Antonio, Texas. We spoke to him before he left his training base in Los Angeles.
How do you feel about being on the Chavez vs Vera card?
It's exciting. To be part of a big event like this is very special to me. The exposure is tremendous and I feel very grateful to Top Rank and my manager Frank Espinoza for the opportunity.
What do you know about your opponent Samuel Sanchez?
He's a guy that's brave and likes to mix it up which is exactly the type of fighter I like to face. He's one of those opponents who usually make for exciting fights.
How was camp for this fight?
It was great. In Los Angeles you find great sparring. Being away from home and my family is a big sacrifice. I've been doing this a long time and I know what it takes to win and that's sacrifice and a lot of work.
What motivates you the most?
Knowing that my work in the gym will pay off on fight night motivates me. Knowing that with every win, I'll get closer to what I want also motivates me. What I want most in life is to be able to provide for my family and to be a world champion. Those things motivate me.
What do you expect for 2014?
I'm just going to keep busy and fight as often as I can. I'm going to let Frank guide my career and I see a lot of exciting things ahead. Hopefully a shot at a youth world title.
What do you love about boxing?
Everything. I'm a real student of the game. I watch fights over and over again and I study them. The classic fights are thrilling. The ones with Julio Cesar Chavez are my favorite to watch.
What do you think of the Mayweather vs Maidana fight?
I think it's going be a tremendous fight. You can't count Maidana out. Every great fighter has his day. No one thought "Buster" Douglas would beat Mike Tyson and look what happened. No one is invincible.
What should boxing fans know about you?
They should know that I truly love and live this sport. All I do is think about boxing and they should know that I'm dedicated and I'm not going to let the fans down. Whenever I step into the ring, they're going to see a real fight.
Any last words for your fans?
I want to thank the fans who've been following me. And I'm not just saying that. Whenever I step into the ring, I always prepare for an exciting encounter. My goal is to win and if I can also entertain my fans, even better. Just keep watching me. There's a lot more excitement to come.