Jesse Rodriguez Headed to Flyweight After Vacating WBC Title
The World Boxing Council has announced Jesse “Bam” Rodriguez (17-0, 11 KOs) has informed them that he will vacate the WBC junior bantamweight title. In a released statement, they saluted the 22-year-old and wished him success in his future endeavors.
Rodriguez captured the then-vacant WBC title with a unanimous decision win over ex-WBC 115-pound champ Carlos Cuadras in February 2022. Bam successfully defended the title twice. In June 2022, he scored an impressive eighth-round stoppage over two-time WBC junior bantamweight champion Srisaket Sor Runvisiai. Next was a unanimous decision victory over rugged perennial contender Israel Gonzalez in September 2022.
THE FUTURE FOR BAM
Rodriguez and his trainer, Robert Garcia, have always hinted at a move down in weight. Before his fight against Cuadras, the pride of San Antonio, Texas was a highly-ranked junior flyweight.
His next bout is an unknown. But word on the street is that Rodriguez is interested in fighting either WBC flyweight champion Julio Cesar Martinez (18-2, 14 KOs) or IBF 112-pound champ Sunny Edwards (18-0, 4 KOs), who previously has said he would like a match with Rodriguez.
SOMETHING TO KEEP AN EYE ON
Here’s another interesting tidbit. Currently, Rodriguez is at the WBO convention in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Could he have eyes on fighting for the WBO flyweight strap? The reigning WBO 112-pound champion is Junto Nakatani of Japan, who fights on November 1 in a non-title bout against Francisco Rodriguez. There is a strong possibility that Nakatani is soon going up to 115 on a permanent basis. If that turns out to be the case, it would leave an opening for Rodriguez to fight for the possibly vacant WBO title.
Many boxing experts consider Bam a rising star and one of the best fighters in the lower-weight divisions. A match between him and flyweight champ Martinez looks particularly tempting. Matchroom promotes both fighters. Their showdown would be an excellent draw in the thriving Mexican/Mexican-American boxing market. Whether at 112 or 115, Rodriguez has loads of marketable fights ahead of him. It will be interesting to see what he and his promoter have up their sleeve.
By: Michael Wilson Jr.