You have to give the man credit, Gabe Rosado (21-8, 13 KOs) simply doesn't shy away from tough competition. There's this saying, "discretion is the better part of valor," but Rosado clearly doesn't subscribe to that philosophy. His last five fights have come against the likes of Gennady Golovkin, J'Leon Love, Peter Quillin, Jermell Charlo, and most recently, a foray into the BKB scene with Brian Vera. Although he was able to KO Brian Vera in his BKB debut, his previous four fights in the boxing ring have all resulted in losses, some of them in a quite damaging manner. Most people will reference the pretty hellacious beating he took at the hands of Golovkin on HBO, a fight that left his face a bloody mess before the fight was mercifully halted.
Despite that setback he also hasn't taken any soft-touches since then, with all the names I just mentioned being top fighters around his division. This time shall be no different and Rosado will be back in the squared-circle on November 8th when he takes on the tenacious junior middleweight puncher, James Kirkland. The fight will be featured on the Hopkins-Kovalev undercard.
"It's going down. Everything's official," Rosado, a 28-year-old native of Philadelphia, confirmed to RingTV.com. "Atlantic City is pretty much in my back yard, being only a short ride from Philly, so there should be a lot of people there for what should be a great fight and a fan-friendly fight."
According to James Kirkland's legal advisor, Michael Miller, the fight will take place at 156-157lbs which is right between the 154 and 160lbs divisions.
"We're waiting for the contract from [Kirkland's promoter] 50 Cent and HBO, but as far as we're concerned, it's a done deal. James accepted the fight on Friday night," said Miller. "You know how conservative I am. Until the contracts are signed, anything can happen, but we should be good."
James Kirkland (32-1, 28 KOs), an all-action puncher, was last seen in the ring in December 2013 where he overcame an early onslaught to put a tremendous beatdown on a game Glen Tapia. At face value, this upcoming fight with Rosado reminds me a bit of the Tapia fight, though I expect Rosado to do much more boxing than trying to knockout Kirkland early. The problem is though, that Kirkland rarely lets boxers box. Through sheer relentless aggression and a fast pace, he almost always tends to drag fighters into a brawl, a tactic that seemingly always serves him much better than his opposition.
With all that said, this should be a pretty good show! I expect Gabe to provide a stiff test to Kirkland, but lets face it, Rosado has a ton of scar tissue in that face of his. Whether or not it will hold together long enough admist a devastating punching machine will be the real question. Perhaps his new, well respected trainer, Jessie Reid, will have a gameplan to keep him out of harms way.