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Photos: Emanuel Navarrete, Ruben Villa - Face-Off at Final Presser

Emanuel "Vaquero" Navarrete has won 27 consecutive bouts. Ruben Villa has never lost as a professional. Something will give Friday evening (ESPN, 10 p.m. ET), when the two battle for the vacant WBO featherweight world title, which became available after Shakur Stevenson moved up to the junior lightweight ranks. (photos by Mikey Williams)

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The ESPN-televised co-feature will see Kazakh middleweight phenom Janibek Alimkhanuly against Gonzalo Coria in a 10-rounder. Undercard bouts, including middleweight prospect Lorenzo "Truck" Simpson against Sonny Duversonne and junior welterweight puncher Elvis "The Dominican Kid" Rodriguez against Cameron Krael, will stream live on ESPN+ at 7:15 p.m. ET.

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Navarrete (32-1, 28 KOs) reigned as WBO junior featherweight world champion and became boxing's most active world champion. He made five defenses of the title he won from Isaac Dogboe in a nine-month span and most recently knocked out Uriel Lopez in a June non-title bout in Mexico City.

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Villa (18-0, 5 KOs), from Salinas, Calif, earned this title shot with wins over the likes of Alexei Collado and Jose Enrique Vivas, but Navarrete represents a giant step up in class. Villa fights for his Salinas Valley home region, which has been ravaged by wildfires in recent months. The poor air quality has forced him to wear a mask during roadwork. The field workers are still out there, providing Villa with ample motivation as he awaits his first world title opportunity.

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User Comments and Feedback
Comment by MeanestNiceGuy on 10-08-2020

[QUOTE=lagako10;20799399]navarette's haircut :rofl:[/QUOTE] He's gotta have the same barber as Eleider Alvarez and David Lemieux.

Comment by lsma464 on 10-08-2020

Damn, Navarrete is looking fresh!

Comment by lagako10 on 10-08-2020

navarette's haircut :rofl:

Comment by JonDelPrado on 10-08-2020

It will be a rude awakening for Salinas I think. It’s all about the intangibles with Navarrete, fighting rhythm, movement, shot choice and placement. Can’t really train for those

Comment by archiemoore1 on 10-07-2020

Idk if Naverette has the same speed and power at this higher weight. When he beat Dogboe, he was on point with everything. His last fight, he looked a little sluggish without the same reaction time and zip on his…

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