Our pick last week came from the matchup between unbeaten Oscarl Valdez (19-0, 17 KOs) and former world champion Evengy Gradovich (21-2-1, 9 KOs). The bout took place on the HBO PPV televised undercard portion of the third bout between Manny Pacquiao and Timothy Bradley. It was scheduled for 12 rounds and the vacant WBO NABO featherweight title on the line. The site of the event was the MGM Grand, Grand Garden Arena, in Las Vegas, Nevada. The card was promoted by Top Rank.
This was a major step up for Valdez and on his biggest stage as a professional. He did not disappoint as he completely dominated Gradovich. Valdez never let Gradovich in the fight hurting him early and often. Valdez put an end to matters in round 4 stopping Gradovich.. The victory now positions Valdez to possible fight for a world title in his next fight. It also continues our current win streak as we selected Valdez as our pick of the week.
Our pick of the week comes from the matchup between unbeaten IBF super featherweight world champion Jose “Sniper” Pedraza (21-0, 12KOs) of Puerto Rico and Stephen “Swifty” Smith (23-1, 13KOs) of the United Kingdom. Pedraza will look to make the second defense of his world title this Saturday night. The 12 round main event will take place at the Foxwoods Resort, in Mashantucket, Connecticut. The fight will air live on Showtime Championship boxing with Lou DiBella (DiBella Entertainment) promoting the show.
This will be the third consecutive fight for Pedraza on Showtime. This will be the first time he will be the headliner on the network. It is a well deserved opportunity for the former 2008 Olympian who has been taking care of business in the ring. Pedraza has a unique combination of being both a boxer and a fair puncher. He can systematically break his opponents down or can box if necessary against an opponent who is very durable.
Smith has a very crowd pleasing style. He enjoys to mix it up quite often. He focuses in on his opponent and comes straight forward. This will be his first time fighting in the United States so a very big opportunity for him. He gets to contend for a world title and market himself to the U.S. fans base, many who will be seeing him for the very first time.
Smith’s biggest name on his resume was against current world champion Lee Selby. Smith rocked Selby multiple times before getting caught himself. Pedraza has looked good and vulnerable in his last two fights. His vulnerability shown in his last fight could be the reason why he is only a slight favorite in this fight. The important thing is he showed and can win in different ways. We think he will be too much for Smith in the end and Pedraza is our pick of the week.
Disclaimer: Boxing360’s Pick of the week is strictly for entertainment purposes only