Sunny Edwards retained his IBF flyweight title with a win over Andres Campos today in London, and made a clear call-out to Jesse “Bam” Rodriguez for a potential unification fight next.
Edwards improved to 20-0 (4 KO) with a win on unanimous scores of 117-111 from all three judges. Bad Left Hook had the fight 116-112 for Edwards on our unofficial card.
Edwards, 27, didn’t have his absolute best performance, but some credit is due the massive underdog Campos (15-1, 4 KO), and some criticism is probably due an arguably tactically flawed approach from Edwards himself.
Edwards said he “knew it was going to be tough,” and admitted that he “probably had one eye on what’s next,” meaning the fight with Rodriguez, the current WBO titleholder.
“Going backwards, no one can touch me. As soon as I want to sit, square shoulders and keep finding that left hand, I can put everyone to sleep here for 12 rounds,” he added, and to be clear, he gestured toward the crowd; Edwards was not boasting that he has some big power and will “sleep” opponents.
“I gave Campos and his traveling fans a couple of rounds, I was trying to find some inside body work, but he was very tough. I thought I hurt him a couple of times, but he didn’t really give me the opportunity, he didn’t keep chasing. I got the space when I needed it. I counted the nine clear rounds.”
Asked why he’s “disgusted” that there are three other titlists in the division, Edwards threw shots at Rodriguez, Julio Cesar Martinez, and Artem Dalakian.
“There’s three other people saying the same things I am, when I’m the only one in my division that’s beaten other world champions,” he said. “All these other fighters are vacant titleholders. They’re not fighting champions, they’re not beating champions, they’re picking the easiest opponents.”
“Jesse Rodriguez against Sunny Edwards is just a fantastic fight. You’ll see him levels above what you just saw in that fight. I actually think the fight we will get done in the next two weeks is Jesse Rodriguez,” Eddie Hearn said.
“Sunny has his doubts, but he said something this week that I think is really important, which is if he can’t get another one of the other champions, he must move up or down to do something different. Because that’s his fourth defense now. He has to fight, he has to defend his title, but he has to chase legacy. That’s when you’re gonna see the best of Sunny Edwards.”
Hearn then “guaranteed” that Edwards would be in a unification next, though he did not guarantee the Rodriguez fight.
“When Bam Rodriguez announced that he was coming to flyweight, he announced that he was coming to fight me for my world title in the UK,” Edwards said. “He didn’t come to the UK, he didn’t come for my title, he went and faced a no-hoper in some faraway land, and he won a vacant title. Who cares about that? He wants to negotiate 50/50, I’ll negotiate 50/50. I want the big fights to create my legacy.”
Edwards vs Campos highlights
Undercard highlights and results
- Johnny Fisher TKO-1 Emilio Salas: He sold tickets and went to 9-0 (8 KO). There is little more to say. Here’s the whole fight, for all it matters. BOSH!
- Ellie Scotney UD-10 Cherneka Johnson: Good fight, Scotney takes the IBF 122 lb title from Johnson on scores of 97-93, 98-92, and 98-92. The scores are not unfair, though I had it a shade closer at 96-94, while thinking the fight belonged to Scotney, even if 6-4 is close. Some of the rounds I gave Johnson really could have gone the other way without any argument for me. Scotney (7-0, 0 KO) wins her first world title at home in London in style, and she got a good scrap from Johnson (15-2, 6 KO), who will absolutely be back, and I wouldn’t at all be surprised to see this fight happen again down the line. Johnson is not plodding or unskilled, but her greatest strength is her grit and warrior mentality, and she used that to keep it really competitive with Scotney, who does have the better boxing skills. It was sort of like the Chantelle Cameron vs Jessica McCaskill fight last year, and definitely worth a look if you missed it.
- Cheavon Clarke TKO-5 David Jamieson: A good call to stop this by referee Bob Williams. Clarke (6-0, 5 KO) was dominating at that point, had dropped Jamieson (10-3, 7 KO) in the fourth and again in the fifth, and it looked like Jamieson had a broken nose, too. Clarke has a nasty streak in him as a fighter, and he’s got a sort of joyful personality otherwise. This was a British title eliminator so in theory, Clarke will face Mikael Lawal soon. There’s actually a solid domestic scene at cruiser in the UK, so there will be options.
- Nina Hughes UD-10 Katie Healy: Hughes retains the WBA bantamweight title in a rout. Scores were 99-91, 100-90, 100-90. BLH unofficially had it 100-90 for Hughes (6-0, 2 KO), who was simply too skilled and too good for Healy (6-1, 0 KO), who took this on short notice. Healy had a big height advantage and I guess you might consider her youth an advantage, but she didn’t do much of anything with either. Hughes is genuinely talented and one of the best fighters in the world at 118. There are good unifications that could potentially happen, and Hughes’ trainer wants Ebanie Bridges, but Bridges — working commentary for DAZN on the show — kinda poo-pooed the idea of it being next. Eddie Hearn also mentioned titlists Dina Thorslund and Yuliahn Luna as opponents.