Boxing After Dark: Uno, Dos, Tres

By Teron Briggs on September 27, 2012
Boxing After Dark: Uno, Dos, Tres
Many pundits believe this fight is merely a showcase for the heavy favorite Rodriguez.

In arguably boxing’s deepest division, super middleweight, Edwin Rodriguez is ranked in the top ten of all three major sanctioning bodies…

What happens when a boxing card’s main event is about as appealing as Kirstie Alley in a thong? On Saturday night at 9:30 PM/ET we’ll get the answer to that question when Edwin Rodriquez (21-0, 14 KOs) faces Jason Escalera (13-0-1, 12 KOs) in the headline bout of a less than scintillating HBO Boxing After Dark triple-header. The most attractive bout of the night is the co-featured matchup of undefeated prospect Luis Orlando Del Valle (16-0, 11 KOs) taking on aging former champion Vic Darchinyan (37-5-1, 27 KOs).

By all accounts Edwin Rodriguez is just the type of fighter you would expect to see on HBO’s BAD series. He’s a fairly well known contender, who appears to be on the cusp of landing a championship bout. In arguably boxing’s deepest division, super middleweight, he’s ranked in the top ten of all three major sanctioning bodies. Rodriguez made his HBO debut in March of this year when he outclassed the limited but durable Don George (22-1-1, 19 KOs) over 10 rounds. Prior to that victory, he notched a few wins over fairly pedestrian opposition, though you expect that of any young fighter on the rise. In the matriculation toward title contention a boxer gradually steps up his level of opposition in an effort to better prepare himself to compete at the championship level. Apparently that’s not the blueprint that promoter Lou DiBella has for Rodriguez, because by fighting Jason Escalera it appears he will be taking two steps back.

“I’ve been hearing things out of Edwin and his camp that he is going to put on a show,” Escalera told reporters at a recent media workout. “If he truthfully believes that, then he is going to be in for a big surprise Saturday night.” Many pundits believe this fight is merely a showcase for the heavy favorite Rodriguez. That is the prevailing thought because despite his undefeated record and high knockout percentage no one has any idea if Escalera, nicknamed “Monstruo”(monster in Spanish) can even fight. If Rodriquez’s opposition could be described as “pedestrian,” it would be fair to call Escalera’s downright pathetic. In his last fight, in May of this year, a complete unknown held him to an eight-round draw. The combined record of his career opponents is 53 wins and 47 losses, with only two of the last five possessing winning records. His three opponents before the “unknown” had all lost their previous fights. Rodriguez is so confident of victory at the final press conference he predicted he would “take this guy out before the sixth round.”

It’s only fair to ask what has Escalera done to earn a spot in the main event of an HBO card. Your guess is as good as mine.

Vic Darchinyan is one of the brashest trash talkers in recent boxing history. He told one opponent he was going to “demolish” him, another he would make him look “dumb and stupid,” and another he would “play him like a baby.” The most scathing thing Darchinyan could muster up for this fight was “Del Valle better be ready for a rough fight because I’m coming hard every round.” Vic’s tough talk has possibly gone by the wayside because he’s lost two straight fights and three of his last five. Darchinyan captured multiple championships during his prime years, however he’s 36 now, and those fights took place in the 112 and 115 pound divisions. At those weight classes he compiled a record of (37–1, 26 KOs) with his only defeat coming to top five pound-for-pound fighter Nonito Donaire. Darchinyan lost four of the seven fights he had 118 pounds and will be facing Del Valle at career high 122 pounds.

Notwithstanding Vic’s recent adversity inside the ropes, Del Valle acknowledges he still poses a threat recently saying, “I’m not taking him lightly and I’m not looking past him.” Del Valle enters the fight after scoring the biggest win of his career against fringe contender Christopher Martin (23-1-3, 5 KOs). In that fight De Valle almost stopped Martin in the seventh round, after landing a wicked left hook, and almost equally as important, put on a crowd-pleasing fight. In his short career De Valle has shown himself to be a high-energy fighter with decent power. If Darchinyan can manage to turn back the clock, boxing fans can expect an action-packed brawl.

The opening television bout will take place in the welterweight division between Alex Perez (16-0, 9 KOs) and Antonin Decarie (26-1, 7 KOs). It was put together in recent weeks when the fight previously scheduled for this slot was scraped due to injury. Neither fighter has notable victory on their record.

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  1. bkdon 10:22am, 10/01/2012

    Well, Vic was certainly entertaining, to say the least. Quite a show the “old” man put on saturday. It will be very interesting to see where he goes from here. Is a rematch w/donaire a viable option at this point? I think the less said about the main event the better. Escalera was not properly prepared to face a guy with as much experience as Rodriguez. That was a mismatch on paper and a mismatch in the ring. I don’t think DeGuardia did that kid any justice, by throwing him into the deep end.

  2. Pete The Sneak 05:00am, 09/28/2012

    Well, I don’t necessarlily think this is one of the worst B.A.D. shows, although it certainly isn’t Barerra/Mckinney. Still, I am looking forward to seeing Rodriguez work again and of course Mr. Vic Darchinyan has been known to do some crazy things in the ring and regardless of his getting up there in age, you can bet he will bring it and be entertaining. Peace.

  3. bk don 04:32am, 09/28/2012

    Escalera can’t be in a dull fight, but is that a good thing, when you look at his level of opposition? I mean, should he really be in anything but blowouts when you look at the guys standing across the ring from him. Guys who came into fights w/him on 4 or 5 fight losing streaks. Guys who had been knocked out multiple times in his career. Not one fringe contender or past their prime champion. He’s feasted subpar opponents

  4. the thresher 03:33am, 09/28/2012

    Joe DeGuardia (Escalera’s promoter, Star Boxing)

    “Like Lou said, Escalera can’t be in a dull fight. He’s like Rocky, working in a meat market for the last eight years. I’m proud of him. He’s taken on anybody we’ve put in front of him. He punches like a mule. He keeps ticking and is undefeated. He’s an undefeated brawler. People want to see a fighter like him. He’s coming into Rodriguez’ hometown going for a knockout.”

  5. the thresher 03:31am, 09/28/2012

    With all due resppect, I disagree.Edwin Rodriguez brings the heat with his great body work, Antonin Decarie is an extremly talanted fighter, and Vic always is interesting—win or lose. I’m looking forward to this card.

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