(Photo credit: Edward Diller) WORCESTER, MA (October 4, 2012) – Fresh off his thorough destruction of previously unbeaten Jason Escalera last Saturday night on HBO Boxing After Dark, undefeated Dominican dandy Edwin “La Bomba” Rodriguez (22-0, 15 KOs) is targeting world champions and top 10 contenders in the super middleweight division.
The only problem for Rodriguez last Saturday evening was getting glitter from Escalera’s trunks off his face.
“I’m ready to fight the best at 168-pounds,” Rodriguez said. “I wanted to make a major statement in my last fight and did. I’ve feel that I’ve earned a world title shot. I trust my promoter, Lou DiBella, and manager, Larry Army, to get my world title shot as soon as possible. I’ll fight anybody they put in the ring with me, whether it’s a world champion, or a top contender. My time is now.”
Having gained invaluable experience sparring with the likes of past and present world champions such as Carl Froch, Chad Dawson, Daniel Geale, and Jean Pascal, the 27-year-old Rodriguez has developed into a complete fighter in the past year working with head coach Ronnie Shields in his last four fights.
The super middleweight division is still somewhat muddled. World Boxing Council (WBC)/World Boxing Association (WBA) World champion Andre Ward is clearly the contemporary King who has options to pick-and-choose his next opponent. However, if the WBC strips him for also being the WBA champion, something that governing body has threatened to do, Rodriguez could be involved in a box-off as the No. 3 contender along with relatively unknown Nikola Sjekloca ranked No. 1, one spot ahead of veteran Sakio Bika.
International Boxing Federation (IBF) title-holder Froch has his dance card full with a title defense November 17 vs. Yusaf Mack, followed by a contractually required rematch in the spring with the former champion he defeated for the crown, Lucian Bute, and later next year a mandatory against the winner of the October 12th IBF title eliminator between Adonis Stevenson and Donovan George. (Rodriguez defeated George this past March by 10-round unanimous decision for the United States Boxing Association championship.)
Therefore, the most likely title shot opportunity for Rodriguez, at least in the immediate future, is December 15 against World Boxing Organization (WBO) champion Arthur Abraham in Germany.
“We’re confident in traveling to Germany to fight Abraham,” Rodriguez’ manager Larry Army remarked, “as long as it’s broadcast in America in case there’s questionable judging. We believe Edwin is ready right now to face any of the world champions. If we’re unable to secure a world title shot, we want to fight the best available top 10 contender like Jermain Taylor or Kelly Pavlik, and even Andy Lee would make for a good fight.
“Edwin has fought three B+ fighters in his last three fights – (Will) Rosinsky, George and Escalera. Edwin is always looking to challenge himself and he’s approaching his peak. He is ready to make his mark in the super middleweight division.”
Rodriguez is rapidly building a strong following, too. He’s also rated No. 4 by the IBF and No. 8 by the WBA, as well as No. 9 by The Ring Magazine, in addition to fighting seven times on national television: twice on HBO (headlining Boxing After Dark once vs. Escalera), three times on Showtime (twice in the ShoBox main event), and twice on ESPN Friday Night Fights.
His last six opponents had an accumulative record of 96-7-3 when they stepped into the ring to face Rodriguez. What’s missing from his boxing resume is a world title and/or victory against a top 10 contender.
Rodriguez represents the future of the super middleweight division. If he’s offered the Dec. 15 title fight against Abraham, the future could come sooner rather than later.
Follow Edwin Rodriguez on Twitter @labombaboxing.
IABA UPDATE (TEN IRISH BOXERS INTO S/FINALS AT EUROPEAN SCHOOLBOY CHAMPIONSHIPS 2012)
Irish Amateur Boxing Association
Another five Irish boxers marched into the semi-finals of the 10th European Schoolboy Championships in Anapa today to guarantee that Ireland will be taking home an unprecedented ten bronze medals (at least) from Russia.
Oliver McCarthy, John Sweeney, Michael Nevin, Kieran Molloy and Darragh Maloney advanced to the last-four following quarter-final wins.
Earlier today, James McGivern, Brett McGinty and James Clarke recorded a hat-trick of quarter-final triumphs.
Nevan Fannon and Francie Stokes booked semi-final berths before today’s program.
Nathan May, despite a gallant performance, lost out in his quest to reach the last-four from one of the opening bouts of the later session.
Ireland’s haul from the last ten European Schoolboy Championships has now jumped from 40 to 50 medals in the space of just one tournament.
Ireland’s young boxers will meet Russian opponents in five of Friday’s semi-finals.
Visit www.iaba.ie for pictures and reports from Irish team manager Paddy Gallagher.
(Below start times are local. Anapa is three hours ahead of Ireland)
10th European Schoolboy Championships Anapa, Russia
October 2nd (Last 16)
40kg: Francie Stokes (Ireland) beat Stanislav Kunov (Ukraine) 6-3
41.5kg: Conor Quinn (Ireland) lost to Furkan Pank (Turkey) 8-11
43kg: Aaron McKenna (Ireland) lost to Tugrulhan Erdemir (Turkey) 9-13
46kg: Oliver McCarthy (Ireland) beat Gokhan Karamusaoglu (Turkey) 8-2
54kg: Matthew Davis (Ireland) beat Darband Aliyev (Azerbaijan) 9-6
62kg: Christopher O’Reilly (Ireland) beat Alexandru Carnasov (Moldova) 13-3
40kg: Francie Stokes (Ireland) beat Rahim Pashayev (Azerbaijan) 11-7
44.5kg: Sean Purcell (Ireland) lost to Umid Rustamov (Azerbiajan) 3-7
48kg:James McGivern (Ireland) beat Ayhan Taghizada (Azerbihjan) 10-5
50kg: John Sweeney (Ireland) beat Ahmad Shtive (Israel) 11-4
56kg: Kieran Molloy (Ireland) beat Luka Oshvakashvili (Israel) RSC2
59Kg: Brett McGinty (Ireland) beat Michael Katz (Israel) 16-7
68Kg: Brian Kennedy (Ireland) lost to Raman Dren (Belarus) 4-9
52Kg: Michael Nevin (Ireland) beat Denis Gashi (Germany) 20-6
54Kg: Matthew Davis (Ireland) lost to Vladislav Batizhevskij (Ukraine) 5-16
62Kg: Christopher O’Reilly (Ireland) lost to Van Melkumyan (Armenia) 5-7
Afternoon session (Quarter Finals)
48KG James McGivern (Ireland) beat Andrej Lovnichij (Ukraine) 13-6
59KG Brett McGinty (Ireland) beat Gurgen Madoyan (Armenia) 19-12
76+KG James Clarke (Ireland) beat Gurgen Hovhannisyan (Armenia) 11-7
Evening session (Quarter Finals)
38.5kg: Nathan May (Ireland) lost to Nick Bier (Germany) 4-7
46kg: Oliver McCartthy (Ireland) beat Sarkhan Aliev (Azerbaijan) 10-4
50kg: John Sweeney (Ireland) beat Kiryl Padlutski (Belarus) 13-9
52kg: Michael Nevin (Ireland) beat Andrea Zupparado (Italy) 11-2
56kg: Kieran Molloy Ireland) beat Evgenij Zagranichnyj Ukraine 15-9
65kg: Darragh Murray (Ireland) beat Artsiom Serada (Bulgaria) 12-4
40kg: Francie Stokes (Ireland) v Albert Rodionov (Russia)
46kg: Oliver McCarthy (Ireland) v Filip Meszarovs (Slovakia)
48kg: James McGivern (Ireland) v Batuhan Aydogan (Turkey)
50kg: John Sweeney (Ireland) v Il’ja Tkachenko (Ukraine)
52kg: Michael Nevin (Ireland) v Nikita Stepanov (Ukraine)
56kg: Kieran Molloy (Ireland) v Artur Mamberger (Germany)
59kg: Brett McGinty (Ireland) v Havazh Mutsolgov (Russia)
65kg: Darragh Murray (Ireland) v Maxim Emelyanov (Russia)
72kg: Nevan Fannon (Ireland) v Ruslan Beglaryan (Russia)
76+kg: James Clarke (Ireland) v Yaroslav Antipov (Russia)
Irish squad 2012 European Schoolboy Championships, Anapa, Russia, October 1st – 7th
38.5kg: Nathan May (Crumlin, Dublin)
40kg: Francie Stokes (Oak Leaf, Derry)
41.5kg: Conor Quinn (Clonard, Antrim)
43kg: Aaron McKenna (Smithboro, Monaghan)
44.5kg: Sean Purcell (Marble City, Kilkenny)
46kg: Oliver McCarthy (Brian Dillons, Cork)
48kg: James McGivern (St Georges, Antrim)
50kg: John Sweeney (Inisfree, Sligo)
52kg: Michael Nevin (Portlaoise, Laois)
54kg: Matthew Davis (Ardagh/Cross, Mayo)
56kg: Kieran Molloy (Oughterard, Galway)
59kg: Brett McGinty (Oak Leaf, Derry)
62kg: Christopher O’Reilly (Bracken, Dublin)
65kg: Darragh Murray (South Meath, Meath)
68kg: Brian Kennedy (Daingean, Offaly)
76kg: Nevan Fannon (Ballyhaunis, Mayo)
76+kg: James Clarke (Kilnamanagh, Dublin)
Director of Boxing: Dominic O’Rourke
Team Manager: Paddy Gallagher
Team Coaches: Dmitry Dimitrov,Fergal McKenna, Brian Barry
R&J: Philip Rooney
Single-fisted boxer making pro debut on Oct. 27 PPV in Brooklyn
Single-Fisted Boxer Michael Costantino
Makes Pro Debut on Oct. 27 Brooklyn PPV
Featuring 2008 US Olympian Sadam Ali & Curtis Stevens
NEW YORK (October 4, 2012) – Single-fisted boxer Michael Costantino will fulfill his dream on October 27 when he makes his professional debut on the “Rising Olympian Star In The Big Apple” pay-per-view event, featuring undefeated 2008 U.S. Olympian Sadam “World Kid” Ali (15-0, 9 KOs), live from Aviator Sports Complex in Brooklyn, New York.
“Rising Olympian Star In The Big Apple,” presented by Sadam Ali’s World Kid Promotions, will be distributed in the United States by Integrated Sports Media for live viewing at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT on both cable and satellite pay per view via iN Demand, DISH Network and Avail-TVN for a suggested retail price of only $29.95.
The 33-year-old Costantino, fighting out of Queens, was born without a right hand. He participated in two New York City Golden Gloves Tournaments, reaching the quarterfinals one year, and he plans to make a statement in his scheduled four-round pro debut against an opponent to be determined.
“This is a dream come true for me,” the property manager in Brooklyn and Queens explained. “I always loved boxing. I was an athlete growing up, playing all sports, and a friend got me into boxing when I was 16. I thought boxing was a beautiful but hard sport and I respected individuals in boxing. I tried boxing and enjoyed it.
“I have to thank Sadam and David Ali for giving me this opportunity. I know Sadam from the amateurs. I’m taking it as one fight at a time. My goal is to show people that anything is possible. I had no problem getting licensed. Fighting on pay per view is important because, the more people who see what I’m doing, the better. I’m just focusing on this fight but I definitely want to show people that anything you put your mind to is possible.”
The youngest boxing promoter in America, 23-year-old Ali is an undefeated welterweight prospect who is taking on former Indiana State champion Jermaine “Too Sweet” White (17-5, 9 KOs), of Chicago, in the 10-round main event.
Santander “The Demolition Man” Silgado
Seven-time Colombian National champion Santander “The Demolition Man” Silgado (22-0, 18 KOs), the World Boxing Council FECARBOX cruiserweight champion, faces battled-tested veteran Gary “Pit Bull” Gomez (19-13-2, 7 KOs) in the 10-round co-feature. Silgado, now fighting out of Brooklyn, is world rated at No. 9 by the World Boxing Council (WBC) and No. 11 by the World Boxing Association (WBA).
Brownsville super middleweight Curtis “Showtime” Stevens (22-3, 16 KOs) fights an opponent to be named in a eight-round bout. Stevens won a gold medal at the 2002 US National Championships as an amateur and he has defeated world champion Carl Daniels in the pro ranks.
Newly crowned World Boxing Federation Intercontinental light middleweight champion Mike “El Cangri” Ruiz (17-7, 9 KOs) drops back to his natural welterweight division to face and opponent to soon be determined. He is coming off his 10th round TKO title-winning performance July 21 against hometown favorite Paul Delgado in Atlanta.
Also fighting on the undercard in four-round bouts are Maine light middleweight Steven Gamache (3-0, 1 KO), the son of former world champion Joey Gamache, and Brooklyn light middleweight Shawn Cameron in his pro debut. Brooklyn bantamweight Jennifer Santiago meets Louisiana invader Ivana Coleman (0-1). All fights and fighters are subject to change.
Tickets, priced at $150.00, $100.00 and $50.00, are on sale and available to purchase by calling 917.807.3630 or 917.655.5254 in Brooklyn and Queens, 718.744.8855 in Manhattan, or 201.914.9392 in Staten Island and New Jersey.
For more information about “Rising Olympian Star In The Big Apple,” go online to www.SadamAliBoxing.com or www.integratedsportsnet.com.Sadam Ali can be followed on Twitter @realworldkidali.