|Red hot light welterweight prospect Oscar Diaz sees action tonight at the Thunderbird Wild West Casino in Norman, Oklahoma where he'll match wits and fists with Thomas Davis over ten scheduled rounds. Tony Holden promotes and ESPN2 will air the contest as the headlining bout on its popular Friday Night Fights program which begins|
at 9pm EST. Diaz has been on a roll of late and is being steadily built towards a world title shot. First he'll have to deal with dangerous spoiler Davis, who hails from Knoxville, Tennessee and has faced superb competition in his last three contests. The card also features an undefeated super middleweight hopeful from Tulsa, Oklahoma, Allan Green in a ten round skirmish but the main attraction is whether or not Diaz can fend off Davis and continue his climb to the upper echelons of one of the most thrilling weight classes in the game.
Oscar Diaz was 17-0 with one no contest when his meteoric rise was halted in March of 2004 by the big hearted light welterweight from Georgia, Ebo Elder. Diaz was stunned by Elder's razor sharp performance as many had written the "X-treme Machine" off after a one round rubout at the hands of Mexican hard man Ubaldo Hernandez two-and-a-half years before. Despite largely being favored to win the fight, Diaz was consistently beaten to the punch and dropped a wide points decision.
Undaunted, the man from San Antonio, Texas used the disappointment as an educational experience and came back a better fighter. Diaz has reeled off four straight on the trot and two of those victories have been important stepping stones for the twenty-two-year-old. Both Jesse Feliciano and Al "Speedy" Gonzalez came into their bouts with Diaz as highly regarded prospects but each emerged defeated by the improved Texan.
The man in the opposite corner tonight in Norman, Oklahoma, participated in three crucial welterweight bouts during 2004. Thomas Davis, 9-2-1 (5), first squared off against future WBA welterweight titlist Luis Collazo in March of that year and discovered the jump in class too great to master, dropping a wide points loss over six rounds. Next time however, the thirty-three-year-old Knoxville man hit paydirt. Kendall Holt was unbeaten in fifteen bouts but was hammered by Davis and never made it out of the first round. Three months later Davis stepped up again to meet seasoned former masterful international champion amateur Nurhan Suleymanoglu. The Turk now living in Houston proved much too polished and stopped the Tennessee man's win streak.
For Davis to rise to the occasion and pull off an upset of Diaz, he'll have to produce a flawless performance in the Ebo Elder mold. It's open to debate that whether or not Davis, at thirty-three-years-of age and only having gone past six rounds once, can keep moving while maintaining a high work rate for ten rounds against a much more experienced opponent. While anything is possible once the bell rings, the smart money is on Oscar Diaz continuing his march towards a world title opportunity.
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