Valdez beats Conceição, retains WBC 130lb title

Valdez 6
Photo: Bob Newman

By Boxing Bob Newman at ringside

Hometown boy Oscar Valdez, carried the hopes of Tucson on his back in his first defense of the WBC super featherweight title against old amateur foe Robson Conceição of Bahia, Brazil on Friday night before 4,545 at the AVA Amphitheater at Casino Del Sol in Tucson, Arizona. This was a rematch 12 years in the making, as Conceição had bested Valdez during the 2009 PanAm games. This was also a battle of highly skilled multi Olympians as Valdez represented Mexico twice while Conceição went for the gold thrice, finally pulling off the trick in his homeland during the 2016 Rio Olympic games.

It was definitely a Mutt & Jeff affair as Conceição, at 5’10” towered over the 5’5.5″ Valdez.

Conceição appeared confident and relaxed as he moved forward behind his jab, Valdez for his part trying to defend and mount an offense against his towering, crafty foe. Valdez began the third nicely as he buried a wicked left hook the body following up to the head of Conceição, bringing the crowd to its feet. But Conceição regained his composure and boxed neatly for the remainder of the round. Valdez was able to mount a brief, fleeting body attack in the fourth, but it seemed minimal against Conceição’s ring generalship, jabbing and moving.

In fact, in the fifth, Conceição used an old Jersey Joe Walcott move, The Walk Away, then saluted the crowd who jeered his every move.

The leather flew more freely in the sixth as Conceição opted to exchange with Valdez- neither man gaining or suffering much in the process, but the crowd loved it. To be honest, they reacted affirmatively at any possible contact Valdez’ gloves may have made with Conceição.

It was a case of Valdez’ solid, less voluminous power punches against Conceição’s crafty, points-building boxing… and which the judges would favor.
In the pivotal ninth, Conceição had a point deducted for hitting behind the head during a clinch. replays showed the punches were mere taps. Valdez appeared to commit the same foul, but only garnered a warning from the ref in the tenth. More of the same in the eleventh as the ref gave Valdez another warning for holding and hitting, much to the dismay of the partisan crowd. Valdez chased in desperation throughout the twelfth, with Conceição mugging to the crowd, and looking the part of the winner. At the bell, both camps lifted their fighters aloft in hopes of victory.

The final scores were as follows: Stephen Blea 117-110, Omar Mintun and Chris Tellez both saw it 115-112, all for Oscar Valdez. Perhaps a rematch is in order. Valdez is now 30-0, 23 KOs, while Conceição loses his first at 16-1, 8 KOs.

“I’ve been through a hard week,” said Valdez. “I’m sorry for all this ruckus. I’m not a disrespectful man. I’ve been through enough. We won the fight. We did what we had to do and it’s on to the next chapter.

“He’s over here yelling in my face. We’re grown men. Don’t be yelling in my face. He might be upset. Of course, you want to be a world champion, but don’t point at me, don’t be yelling in my face. I’ve been through enough this week, man.

“It makes the fight complicated when someone is trying to run the whole fight. I’m trying to put on a good show for my fans, give the fans what they want, which is a good fight. If he wants to run… you can’t win a fight running like that.

“We all want the winner of Shakur Stevenson and Jamel Herring. Let’s do it.”

Promoter Bob Arum added, “If the fighters want the fight, I have no problem putting Oscar in with the winner of Jamel Herring and Shakur Stevenson.”

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Valdez-Conceição/Nakatani-Acosta Photo Galleries
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  • Terrible judges Valdez lost and the commentators were horrible as well, it was clear who the ESPN fighter was. And that point deduction was awful

    • Ward and Bradley talked a good game all week only to turn around and make sure their jobs with ESPN were secure. They should be ashamed!

    • Agree 100% with everything you say but on a side note why did ESPN continue to show an audience of drunks all night?

  • Poor guy had to fight the ref, the commentators, the crowd and finally the judges. Valdez face looks like it went through a meat grinder. Out landed Valdez 141 to 83 and still lost 117-110 on one card. Bernardo should have recused himself from this fight.

  • Some shady busines sharpened in that one! The Brazilian fighter dominated nearly every round adtr the 5th round every announcer went from saying how dominate the Brazilian was to all of a sudden saying he’s being dominated. He did the exact same dominating throughout the fight punc stats they put up before they stopped showing them had the Brazilian land mor than double that of Valdez!! The fix was in! I called it scoring was 111-117, 112-115 and 112-115 one of the worst I’ve ever seen!! I dont want to even watch another Top Ra
    nk fight its just getting ridiculous WWE=top rank

    • I watched the same fight and thought Valdez when almost every round after the fifth….huh?

  • worst deceision i thought top rank was a little better until now this was bad. no punch stat numbers no scoring by rounds. clean it up………….bob

  • Bad referee job, deducting a point for touching Valdez and just one Warning to the guy from Brasil (in the end) for holding múltiple times!!!!!

  • B.S Valdez loss the judges the referee and Bob Arum give him the fight and the Back up of WBC somebody tell me the guy connect more punchers Loss the fight.B.S.

  • It was like I was watching the Hispanic Channel when Mexico plays Soccer, the TV` people were all clearly favoriting Valdez and speaking of things that weren’t happening in the actual fight, like if we were listening on the radio like the old times. But the Judges were the cherry on the top of the cake. What a Horrible night for the sport, discussing. Shame on them.

  • The terrible judging continues. The sickness of boxing. The Brazilian outboxed Valdez

  • Glad I boycotted this Biznatch! Reading from the comments it sounds like Tim Bradley sucked up to the corporate nipple as he always does!!!! IDK why he tries to be like Teddy Atlas in his commentary????

  • I always supported espn for being unbiased and fair, compared to the other networks (pbc related). Timothy Bradley made the only closest and realistic comment saying that Valdez didn’t win the fight but the Brazilian gave it away for different reasons . I compare the viewing of the fight and the espn commentating team to cult leaders trying to lie and convince viewers and followers that something didn’t happen.

    • Wow, that’s an interesting, but nonetheless appreciable analysis of the fight. I feel really bad for the Brazilian. As I saw the fight, it was a bit closer in the later rounds, but he dominated the early and middle rounds. If scoring is based upon who takes the most punches, then Conceicao won just on THAT premise alone. Yes, the Mexican was the aggressor — throughout the fight, but much of his aggression was nullified by the defense of the Brazilian. And the judge who had the score 111-117….???????????

  • I don’t even know how this fight took place as Valdez according to online reports tested positive for phentermine (a drug used for weight loss) a month ago and was permitted to keep the fight per the tribal gaming commission and sanctioning body. Valdez barely made weight @ the 130-pound limit.

  • Can’t believe announcers were saying 115-113 was way too close. That the 117 card was correct. Bradley agreeing with the point deduction. Just a joke.
    Surprised Flores didn’t get the decision in the first fight.

  • The Brazilian was skillful effective and smart in his strategy-He definitely won and was robbed-Boxing has too many crooks involved and that is why side shows like the Paul brothers are getting an audience-Boxing is controlled by a mafia of dishonourable operators-sad

  • That Ref shouldn’t have deducted a point for that and Bradley was clearly drunk or high while doing commentary. He really thought mcgirt was the Brazilian fighters trainer?? . Anyways Valdez brought the pressure and landed the bigger shots down the stretch and made it close enough to get the victory. You can’t fight like an amateur against the champ in a hostile Mexican crowd and expect to get a decision victory.

    • @Akhenten Amarna He fought the way he wanted to and in my opinion won the fight, I don’t care nothing about amateur boxing styles and Valdez being the champ my eyes work and I had Conceição winning the fight. Valdez was getting credit for landing power punches that had no effect on Conceição, Conceição threw more punches landed more punches and had a higher connect rate. And as for the commentators they’re boot lickers who’d sell their souls for a paycheck, prior to the fight they talked the talk but in their actions they certainly didn’t walk the walk.

  • Well I said after the berchelt fight that I wouldn’t doubt this kid. I didn’t see this fight but it seems unanimous by the comments that he lost. I’m going to contest it, I’m just going to say that maybe it was a bad night for him. Only time will tell how good this kid is…

    • Whetto. Heres the breakdown. Robson took it to Valdez from the start. He was faster, sharper and had great movement. He plain outboxed Valdez. Valdez may have snuck a round in or so. It seemed like after the 5 round, Robson stopped boxing and jumped on his bike slower than earlier rounds of course. Valdez got his timing and movement and started landing shots. Good hard shots and basically stole it from Robson. If these folks on here want to be disappointed at anyone, it should be Robson. He gave it away. Remember the ODLH vs Trinidad fight. Same situation here. Robson let off the gas and paid for it with a decision. Shld have been a draw. Point deduction was bullshit but so were Robsons antics, especially on the breaks. Ref just got tired of Robsons childish games im sure

  • Conceição was handily winning the fight by the 5th round. However, he did it by using his jab repeatedly and throwing meaningful punches while forcing Valdez to back up. After the 5th, he forgot about his game plan and began retreating, showboating and occasionally turning his back and running. I’m sure that didn’t endear him to the judges. He reverted to his amateur fighting moves throwing punches while retreating the rest of the fight. His punches lacked conviction in the second half of the fight. For the most part, he forgot about the jab which set up his other punches.

    Oscar didn’t help his cause any by headhunting in the last 3 rounds and doing a lot of missing. Even smart fighters get tunnel vision and forget that the body is an easier and better target. He should have doubled down on his body punching mixed with head shots and slowed Conceição down even more. I thought he did land the harder punches in the 2nd half and managed to pull it out. The 115-112 score seemed about right, although the point deduction was not justified but Conceição had no one but himself to blame for that. He was showing his disdain for Valdez.

    It was ultimately an extremely disappointing performance by Conceição and he has no one else to blame but himself. I believe Valdez will be in trouble if the faces Stevenson. Stevenson is even harder to hit than Conceição but is smart enough to adopt a winning game plan and stick to it all fight long.

    • I agree APDuenas. Reminds me of ODLH vs Trinidad. Conceicao is quite the immature fighter. Had he of stuck to his plan, it wld have been a different outcome. Im not much of a fan of either BUT less of a fan of Robson now. I hated the fact that on most breaks, he still kept moving foward until the ref physically pushed him back. Not sure what he was trying to prove. Maybe intimidate Valdez? Guess it didnt work lol

  • There is no footage of Valdez landing more than one punch at a time the whole fight. Robson boxed very well and put his punches together well. Valdez had real difficulty and just couldn’t make adjustments in this fight and his frustration showed it. It was not a close fight at all. Conceicao won 8-9 rounds and should have been crowned the new champion. When you heard the scores being read you could clearly hear the crowd say “AND THE NEW” only to hear outrage from them moments later. This is exactly what kills Boxing. Fans become ex fans.

  • Lots of complaints but now people got to do something about it. They are getting paid for poor judging and promoting and calling fight wrong. People need not to but or watch the fights so therefore they can not generate money or even sponsor these phones. There are few soldiers that deserve $$$

  • Instead of Valdez beats Conceição,
    much appropriate Valdez won over Conceição, since Valdez face looks beaten up.

  • Leave it to Tucson where controversy always appears. I asked the question, who were the other two judges and to NO AVAIL, did I get an answer.

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