Oscar De La Hoya will undoubtedly root for violence on fight night.
For now, all he sought was peace with a former Golden Boy Promotions fighter.
The Hall of Fame former six-division champ and GBP chairman chose to make amends with Seniesa Estrada during a press conference Wednesday afternoon to announce the undisputed strawweight championship. Estrada will face Golden Boy-promoted Yokasta Valle for all the belts on March 29 at Desert Diamond Arena in Glendale, Arizona.
De La Hoya was on stage with Estrada, whom his company promoted from 2018 through their bitter split in 2022. There was tension during the press conference given the contentious rivalry between Estrada and Valle, as well as Estrada’s own admission that the fight was personal for a number of reasons.
That’s when her previous promoter extended an olive branch.
“I just have to say, I get enough hate all around the world. Can we just smoke the peace pipe,” De La Hoya said before he walked to Estrada, who hugged her fellow East Los Angeles native. “You guys go at it!”
Estrada (25-0, 9KOs) will defend her unified lineal, WBC, WBA and Ring Magazine strawweight championship versus Costa Rica’s Valle (30-2, 9KOs), who will risk her IBF and WBO belts in the ESPN+ co-feature.
There was a long period of time when Estrada wanted to fight Valle, first as a challenger for her IBF title and then in a unification bout when both had titles and were under the Golden Boy umbrella.
Estrada’s contract with Golden Boy ran out after her December 2021 fourth-round knockout win over Maria Santizo to defend her WBA title. She went much of 2022 in dispute with her estranged promoter before she signed with Top Rank, who will present the March 29 show. Two fights later, Estrada added the WBC belt to her collection with a ten-round shutout of unbeaten Tina Rupprecht, the last fighter to defeat Valle back in June 2018.
Valle signed with Golden Boy in 2022, while Estrada was still figuring out her next promotional move. She has since added the WBO belt to her collection and also won the IBF and WBO junior flyweight titles before she dropped back down to strawweight. Valle made a point to be ringside for Estrada’s win over former IBF flyweight titlist Leonela Paola Yudica last July 28 in Las Vegas, after which time she entered the ring to challenge her fellow unified titlist.
Estrada once again pushed in to make the undisputed fight and acknowledged the role played both by her current promoter and past to make this dream fight a reality.
“Thank you for making the fight happen as well,” Estrada told De La Hoya. “Even though the buildup has been years in the making, there’s no better time than right now.”
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. X (formerly Twitter): @JakeNDaBox