Wagner Seeking to ‘Destroy’ Vazquez in IBF International Championship Challenge Apr. 27 in Toronto

Undefeated Orangeville, Ont. product Josh ‘The Boss’ Wagner (17-0, 9 KO) faces Argentina’s Geronimo ‘El Caballero’ Vazquez (17-1, 5 KO) for the vacant IBF International Championship on April 27 at Great Canadian Casino Resort Toronto.

Carlos Verde (United Promotions, CV): Next month’s Vazquez fight represents the biggest title opportunity of your career.

Josh ‘The Boss’ Wagner (JW): Obviously my team and I want the best fights moving forward, we want to be Top 10-ranked (and) this is one of those fights. One of the major sanctioning bodies, it means a lot to me and I’m excited to put on a great show.

Sara fighting for the world title, I’m fighting a 17 and 1 guy for an IBF title — I can’t wait!


CV: We saw you in a few very different fights last year. A comfortable decision over Xhuljo Vrenozi, while Williams Herrera was a 10-round war in Barrie and Abraham Juarez made you work for the 8th-round stoppage. What did you learn from each of those fights?

JW: When I made my comeback, I told myself and my team I want the best fights possible — I like to challenge myself every fight.

You always want the knockout, but it is nice knowing I’m able to go 10 rounds, toe-to-toe. Herrera gave me 10 hard rounds, and Juarez was a durable guy that I managed to stop late.

Knowing my power carries throughout the fight, and at 17 and 0 with nine knockouts I’ve shown I can box and move, have a very high boxing IQ, and we want to get those opportunities for pay-per-view, world titles.

Wagner lands a hard right against Williams Herrera on July 8, 2023. (Jeff Lockhart photo)

To get to that level, you usually have a very good highlight reel. People want to see knockouts, they want to see violence, so we’re working on sitting down on shots.

Vazquez is a southpaw, and I’ve always done well with southpaws, (so) we want to sit in the pocket more. Guys who have fought me know I have power, and sitting in the pocket will enable me to score some good knockouts!

CV: Josh Wagner in 2024 is very different than the Josh Wagner that began his career in Edmonton a decade ago, and different even than the Josh Wagner which began his comeback in the States during the pandemic. Talk about your personal growth and the team behind you.

JW: I’ve been able to live a very blessed life, with a wonderful family, two dogs. 

I have a beautiful girlfriend, we live together. She’s a huge part of my team, and does so much behind the scenes that nobody sees which all adds to my performance on fight night.

Wagner rips a body shot through Turkey’s Yaser Yuksel in November 2022.

My day-to-day is a lot of training, hanging out with my dogs and living my best life, man.

I am who I am, I’ll give anyone the time of day. A happy fighter is a dangerous fighter, (and) I’m just super grateful for how everything is going.

CV: What have you and your team seen of Vazquez?

JW: I’ve seen a few videos on Youtube, but we typically dig into that at the end of camp (and) I put a lot of trust in (trainer) Stevie (Bailey).

Vazquez is a southpaw with good fundamentals, who can come forward and box on the back foot. The first couple rounds will be figuring out different angles and stuff.

I have a game plan going in: This guy isn’t as strong as me, he doesn’t have the same will as me and he definitely doesn’t train as hard as me.

I’m not sure how he lives his life, but April 27th I hope I get the best version of him.

CV: What is the message to Vazquez ahead of your International Championship clash next month?

JW: Train hard. I wish you no injuries in training camp, and a safe flight. Be prepared to go through hell.