Joseph Diaz Jr. close to title shot, so he must be on point against Andrew Cancio

Joseph Diaz Jr., seen in his pro debut against Vicente Alfaro in 2012, is 18-0 and fighting for a vacant regional featherweight title Friday in Indio. (Photo courtesy of Golden Boy Promotions)

Joseph Diaz Jr. decks Vicente Alfaro in August 2013. Diaz will take on Andrew Cancio on Saturday at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas/Photo courtesy of Golden Boy Promotions


Joseph Diaz Jr. of South El Monte is getting close to a world-title fight, so he can’t afford to stumble. Diaz will take on Andrew Cancio (17-3-2, 13 KOs) of Blythe underneath Canelo AlvarezLiam Smith on Saturday at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas (on HBO pay-per-view). A victory over Cancio could be the final step – at the least, next-to-final-step – before Diaz gets his first major championship fight.

Diaz (21-0, 12 KOs) is really pumped.

“I am at 110 percent right now, and my confidence levels are through the roof,” he said. “I feel like no one can beat me. I feel like I’m at my best and come Saturday night I’m going to show the fans that I’ve got what it takes to be at the very top.”

Diaz is ranked as high as No. 3 by one governing body.

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