Edwin Rodriguez impresses in Chicago; Donovan George goes to war with Osumanu Adama

boxingBy Matthew Paras - Super Middleweight Edwin Rodriguez (15-0, 11 KOs) opened up the televised portion of 8 Count Production’s Windy City Fight Night with an impressive performance by stopping Kevin Engel (17-3, 14 KOs) in the sixth round with a perfect body shot. Time was 2:35.

With an attendance of 2817 and thousands watching on Showtime’s televised series, Shobox, Edwin Rodriguez came out looking to put on an exciting performance. Rodriguez wasted no time throwing punches and putting combinations together. For the first two rounds, he targeted the body often and then followed with a series of punches upstairs.

Kevin Engel had trouble adjusting until he landed a blasting left hook that got Rodriguez’s attention. Starting to come forward with his jab, it seemed like Engel could potentially pose a threat to Edwin Rodriguez. Rodriguez remained calm, throwing sharp counter rights, and he connected with them to win back the round..

While Engel landed the occasional hard shot, Rodriguez in the next few rounds continued to work over Kevin Engel. With slick counter punches and impressive uppercuts from Rodriguez, Engel’s face started to swell up badly. Also bleeding from the nose, Engel stuck around taking punches until Rodriguez caught him with a beautiful right hand to the body. Kevin Engel dropped, grimacing with pain as referee John O’ Brien counted him out.

Donovan George goes to war with Osumanu Adama

By Matthew Paras - In what was easily the best fight of the night, Donovan George (20-0, 17 KOs) eked out a competitive unanimous decision with the tough African fighter Osumanu Adama (17-2, 13 KOs). The fight was highly contested and a war throughout.

Both fighters wasted no time after the opening bell rang as punches went flying. It was Adama who appeared to have the slight advantage because George’s shots were being blocked, while Adama would land the cleaner blows. This was the first time George had experienced a fighter with such an active work rate and until midway through round two, Donovan George seemed to have a great chance of losing.

However, in round two Donovan George landed a crisp right hand that got Adama’s attention. Adama backed off and for George to be able to apply his pressure. George’s pressure was effective, but it did not discourage Adama.

Round three was one of the most entertaining rounds of the fight, when both fighters sat down and exchanged brutal punches. While Adama at first appeared to be getting tired from his high activity, he managed to keep the pace. George landed a huge right hand, only to have it be countered by a clean left hook. Both fighters would not back off of each other as they stood toe to toe, but Adama was able to get the better of it by landing the cleaner punches.

The action just got better and better in the following rounds. George had a big round four with landing significant shots that appeared to hurt Adama. The man from Ghana showed a lot of heart though as he would not stop trying to come forward. George and Adama traded bombs, but George clearly had an edge in punching power to help him win the rounds.

Still, the rounds were close and it felt like the fight could turn in any moment. The Chicago crowd screamed for Donovan George to do something big, cheering for their hometown man. George came through for his fans when in the seventh round he landed a big right hand unexpectedly taking everyone by surprise. Adama displayed an excellent boxing IQ by staying down for an 8 count and then arising up off the canvas. George rushed Adama to try and finish him off, but to not avail as the bell sounded.

Round eight was suspenseful. George and Adama fought hard to the final bell, but it was amazingly Adama who won the round. After going down in round seven, Adama landed the cleaner blows, even hurting George with a right hand in the round. Fighting up to the final bell, the crowd was ecstatic at the back and forth action they were witnessing throughout the whole fight.

In the end, Donovan George was announced the winner by unanimous decision by scores of 79-72, 76-75, 77-74. Eastsideboxing had it 77-74 George.

Johnson Decisions Edwards

By Matthew Paras: Two undefeated Super Middleweights, Marcus Johnson (19-0, 14 KOs) and Derek Edwards (25-1, 13 KOs) fought each other to take the other ones “0” Friday night on Showtime’s series, Shobox. Johnson out landed and out worked Edwards to claim a unanimous decision victory by scores of 98-92 twice and 97-93.

Each fighter came out trying to establish their jab and it was Edwards who was able to land the cleaner shots to be able to squeak the round out. While Edwards was able to have success in the first round, Marcus Johnson did a good job of adapting to Edwards sneaky right hands. Johnson used his own jab, movement, and occasional flurries to offset Edwards’ offense.

The fight was nowhere near the barn burner Donovan George provided, but it was an interesting tactical battle. Johnson and Edwards were both natural counter punchers, trying to lure the other fighter into traps. Johnson was the bit more active and it paid dividends for him. Edwards had a harder time coping with Johnson’s occasional outbursts of speed. Edwards proved to be a decent fighter though as his slickness caused Johnson to not hit cleanly.

Each round was more or less the same. After figuring out Edwards’ style, Marcus Johnson seemed to go on cruise control. He executed his gameplan of coming forward with his jab and fighting in short bursts of flurries to make Edwards uncomfortable. Edwards was tough, slipping a good number of shots, but it was not enough to win the fight.

After a night of three featured Super Middleweights, all three focused fighters kept their undefeated streaks alive.

Article posted on 01.05.2010

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