Boxing

Edwin Rodriguez and James McGirt Jr. - Pre-Fight Face-Off Interview

By Nick Powers - One night before the Super Six World Boxing Classic’s Stage Three match-ups kick off on Showtime, up-and-coming Super Middleweight fighters Edwin “La Bomba” Rodriguez (16-0)and James “Buddy” McGirt, Jr. (22-2-1) will compete for recognition in the landscape of boxing’s ever-changing 168 pound division. Speaking with On the Ropes Boxing Radio on November 1, both men revealed little of their game plan to hostess Jenna J, producer Geoffrey Ciani and co-host Nick Powers, though the same cannot be said of either’s confidence for their upcoming bout on ShoBox this Friday.

“I had a great camp. I was out in Australia, I had great sparring; I’m ready,” said Rodriguez, whose time in Australia included helping prepare Middleweight Daniel Geale for his twelfth round TKO victory over Roman Karmazin. “James McGirt is a good fighter, he has good movement and good speed, and I’m ready for the best McGirt.”

McGirt also insisted that no matter what potential fights may lie ahead, he along with Rodriguez is focused on the task at hand.

“I can’t really talk for him, I just know that he’s a good fighter and he’s coming in strong; he’s coming to try to win, and I can’t let that happen, you know? I can’t really say what’s going to do or what he’s not going to do,” McGirt added.

Both Rodriguez and McGirt are talented and youthful at 25 and 27 years old, respectively, and a win for either man puts them in talks of being recognized as one of the top 10 or 15 fighters in the Super Middleweight Division. For McGirt, a chance to prove that his previous shortcomings were merely due to weight issues is crucial in proving why his three fight win streak since dropping a unanimous decision to Angel Hernandez in January 2009 is no coincidence.

“I sucked a lot of weight that fight. I mean, I don’t think I lost, I mean Teddy Atlas had me winning by what, five rounds?” asked McGirt, who admits that the 160 pound limit that had to be reached in a shortened three or four week training camp was extremely difficult. “But as the years went on, I started to get older you’re not going to lose the weight any faster, and that 160 man that was, that was hell. That sucked, that really sucked man. So now I’ve got eight pounds to work with, and I feel so much better.”

Rodriguez, undefeated and stepping up considerably in competition for his fight against McGirt, has had no such weight issues recently. Working with a nutritionist for the first time in his career, Rodriguez acknowledges that losing weight with food has given him a renewed sense of dedication.

“I’m here to win a world title, and I’m working my way up and every day is a new experience and a new challenge,” said Rodriguez. “I’m focused in boxing because this is a big fight for me, and I have a good fight in front of me, so I took it a little more serious. I’m ready.”

The interview, though not filled with trash talk as both men kept it cordial, did not end without some back and forth entirely. As the talk winded down, Rodriguez made sure to let his opponent know that he was hoping for the best opponent he could face this coming Friday; a wish that McGirt was more than happy to inform him would be granted.

Rodriguez: “I’m sorry, Buddy, but it’s either you or me, and I’m damn right going to pick me any day of the week.”

McGirt: “Oh, you’re supposed to, but it’s going to be a long night.”

Edwin Rodriguez vs. James McGirt, Jr. will be broadcast on “ShoBox: The Next Generation” this Friday, November 5, 2010 at 11 P.M. on Showtime.

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For those interested in listening to the Edwin Rodriguez-James McGirt Junior face-off interview in its entirety, it begins approximately eighteen minutes into the program.

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Article posted on 05.11.2010



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