Rodriguez vs Edwards Running Order, Start Times, Fight Card And Main Event Ring Walks

Rodriguez vs Edwards Running Order, Start Times, Fight Card And Main Event Ring Walks

  • Jesse Rodriguez and Sunny Edwards Clash Dec 16 In The US Live On DAZN
  • The WBO/IBF Flyweight Unification Is One Of The Best Fights In The Calendar
  • Rodriguez vs Edwards Running Order And Other Important Details Ahead Of Sat

WBO Flyweight champion Jesse ‘Bam’ Rodriguez (18-0, 11 KOs) and IBF titleist Sunny Edwards (20-0, 4 KOs) collide in a colossal, transatlantic unification fight this Saturday, December 16 in Arizona live on DAZN.

Rodriguez, a two-division champion, rose to fame last year when he stepped up two weight classes on ten days’ notice to floor and outpoint Mexico’s Carlos Cuadras back in February claiming the vacant WBC world title.

The American then produced a masterful performance against the highly-regarded Srisaket Sor Runvisai becoming the first fighter to stop Rungvisai in 13 years, Rodriguez has since had back-to-back underwhelming displays, going the distance against Israel Gonzalez and Cristian Gonzalez – but still winning convincingly.

Edwards dominated South Africa’s Moruti Mthalane to win his IBF strap in April 2021. Since then, the 27-year-old has made four defences of his title, craving a unification fight. The Brit signed with Eddie Hearn’s Matchroom before his latest defence in the hopes of landing the legacy bouts and in the second fight of his deal has finally gotten his wish.

Rodriguez vs Edwards Undercard

Murodjon Akhmadaliev will face Kevin Gonzalez in an eliminator for the WBA World Super-Bantamweight title as the chief support bout.

Akhmadaliev (11-1 8 KOs) is gunning to get a shot at winning the WBA title back after the former unified king surrendered the crown along with the IBF strap via a majority decision loss against Marlon Tapales in San Antonio in April.

The Uzbek star ripped the belts from Daniel Roman in February 2020 in Miami and successfully defended them three times before the reversal against Tapales, and now the 29-year-old will be looking to take a massive step towards gaining one of his old titles back early in 2024 with victory.

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Gonzalez (26-0-1 13 KOs) will have other ideas though and can catapult himself into the big leagues by handing Akhmadaliev back-to-back defeats. The Mexican, who sits at #2 in the WBA rankings behind the Uzbek, was last in action in March where he defeated Jose Sanmartin in Las Vegas.

The unbeaten 25-year-old tastes action in the States for the third straight fight having beaten Emanuel Rivera Nieves in California in May 2022, and fights over 12 rounds for the first time in the biggest fight of his career to date.

Galal Yafai will be hoping to get his job done and take his seat for the main event, and it is a second outing in America as he defends his WBC International Flyweight title against Rocco Santomauro.

Yafai (5-0 4 KOs) won the title on debut in London in February 2022 and travelled to New York to make his first defence two months later. Last time out, Yafai destroyed Tommy Frank in a hometown of Birmingham in August, and the Olympic gold medal man will look to close 2023 out in style against the experienced Californian Santomauro (22-2 6 KOs).

Peter McGrail fights in the States for the first time in the paid ranks and fights for his first pro title as he takes on Ja’Rico O’Quinn for the WBA Continental Super-Bantamweight belt.

McGrail (8-0 5 KOs) bagged a second wide points win of 2023 in his last action on his home patch in Liverpool last month, and now the 27-year-old can cap his year by adding his first pro honours to his wealth of amateur titles with victory over Detroit’s O’Quinn (16-1-1 8 KOs).

Rodriguez vs Edwards Undercard: Before The Bell

The Before the Bell action will be launched by Joe McGrail (7-0 3 KOs), who fights for the eighth time in the pros against Brandon Rosales Marquez (6-5-2) over six rounds at Featherweight.

The fifth Brit to step through the ropes on the night will be rising star Junaid Bostan (7-0 6 KOs), with the Rotherham talent tackling unbeaten Detroit man Gordie Russ II (6-0 6 KOs) over eight rounds at Super-Welterweight.

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Completing the line-up in Arizona and also starring in the Before the Bell portion of the card are Californian Arturo Popoca (11-0-1 7 KOs) who faces Carlos Mujica (8-3 3 KOs) over eight rounds at Super-Bantamweight.

And Albert Gonzalez (5-0 2 KOs) who takes on Robenilson Vieira de Jesus (5-1 1 KO) over six rounds at Featherweight.

Rodriguez vs Edwards Running Order

6 x 3 mins Super-Bantamweight contest
JOE MCGRAIL (125.8lbs)            vs.        EDGAR ORTIZ JR. (123lbs)

Liverpool, England                                Phoenix, Arizona
Followed by
6 x 3 mins Featherweight contest
ALBERT GONZALEZ (127.2lbs)    vs.        ALEXIS MOLINA (126.2lbs)

Perris, California                                   Guadalajara, Mexico
Followed by
8 x 3 mins Super-Welterweight contest
JUNAID BOSTAN (155.2lbs)        vs.        GORDIE RUSS II (155.2lbs)

Rotherham, England                             Detroit, Michigan
Followed by
8 x 3 mins Super-Bantamweight contest
ARTURO CARDENAS (123.4lbs)  vs.        CARLOS MUJICA (122lbs)

Michoacán, Mexico                               Las Vegas, Nevada
10 x 3 mins WBA Continental Super-Bantamweight title
PETER MCGRAIL (121.6lbs)        vs.        JA’RICO O’QUINN (122lbs)

Liverpool, England                                Detroit, Michigan
Followed by
10 x 3 mins WBC International Flyweight contest
GALAL YAFAI (111.8lbs)             vs.        ROCCO SANTOMAURO (111.4lbs)

Birmingham, England                            Apple Valley, California
Followed by
12 x 3 Eliminator for the WBA World Super-Bantamweight title
MURODJON AKHMADALIEV (121.6lbs)   vs.        KEVIN GONZALEZ (121lbs)

Chust, Uzbekistan                                 Culiacan, Mexico
Followed by
12 x 3 mins WBO and IBF World Flyweight unification 
JESSE RODRIGUEZ (111.6lbs)     vs.        SUNNY EDWARDS (111.6lbs)

San Antonio, Texas                                Croydon, England

Rodriguez vs Edwards UK Time, TV Channel, Ring Walks

Date: Saturday, December 16

Venue: Desert Diamond Arena, Glendale, Arizona, USA

TV Channel: DAZN (Worldwide)

Prelims: 10 pm BST (5 pm ET/2 pm PT)

UK Time: 01:00 am BST (8 pm ET/ 5 am PT)

Ring Walks: 03:45 pm BST (10:45 pm ET/ 7:45 pm PT)

Edited By Darshan Desai

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Image Credit: Ed Mulholland/Matchroom Boxing