At the age of 25, Danny is a four-year pro. A young prospect at 154 pounds, he is a former amateur standout.
He stayed active in the ring with four fights in 2014, three in 2015, four in 2016, and two in 2017.
In his last fight on June 24 in Phoenix, Arizona, he lost an eight-round unanimous decision against Vladimir Hernandez. The bout was one of the co-main events at the Celebrity Theater, and it was a good, close fight. Hernandez generally out-worked Danny in several rounds and won by scores of 78-74, 77-75, 77-75.
Danny said, “I train in Lemoore, California, at the Palafox Gym. I’ve been very focused on every aspect of my training.
“It was an adjustment from the amateurs to the pros. It’s like every fight is a championship fight now – every punch counts.
“I’m a boxer-puncher, but very athletic – some people refer to me as an ‘athletic specimen.’ I like to box and come forward and land hard shots.
“I’ve been in training camp with Gennady Golovkin – not sparring with him – but I’ve been in his camp up in Big Bear and I learned from him. I also went to camp up there with Gilberto ‘Zurdo’ Ramirez. He brought me up to Big Bear for sparring. I sparred with a lot of big names up there – I sparred with Shane Mosley Sr., and I’ve also been in camp with Alfredo ‘El Perro’ Angulo and sparred with him. They really liked my work.
“I always like to say – listen to your heart. Whatever you feel in your heart, go after that dream and give it all you’ve got. I’m listening to my heart and going after my dream.”
Regarding his nickname, he said, “It means ‘grasshopper.’ I got it in Laredo, Texas, after my pro debut. I won – I got a second-round knockout – and I was super happy! It was like a dream come true and I started jumping up and down and I started doing some pushups. And I heard the people start chanting, ‘chapulin … chapulin …’ I asked my brother what they were saying and he said, ‘I don’t know, but keep jumping.’ So I kept jumping and the next thing I know, the ring announcer, Lupe Contreras, said, ‘That’s an awesome nickname, you should keep it.’ So I just kept it.”
AMATEUR, PERSONAL BACKGROUND: Danny said, “I was born in Jalpa, Zacatecas, Mexico. I have four brothers and one sister. I’m the youngest one – I’m the baby. I came to California from Mexico when I was two years old. My dad came here first and we stayed back. He worked in the fields in Dinuba for a while, then he was able to bring the rest of us here. My dad is retired now, and my mom works at Ruiz Foods in Tulare. My brother, Santiago Valdivia, used to box as an amateur and he’s the one that got me started.
“I was 10 years old when I started boxing. I think I had close to 100 amateur fights like, 80 wins and 12 losses.
“I’m naturally right-handed. I ran track in high school and played football, too. I went to College of Sequoias in Visalia, California. It’s a two-year college. I played football there, too.”…