Jesse Rodriguez Replaces Rungvisai; Faces Cuadras For WBC Title

Jesse Rodriguez Steps Up For A Title Shot!

Jesse Rodriguez flexes; Carlos Cuadras with the WBC title.
Jesse Rodriguez (left) and Carlos Cuadras

Jesse Rodriguez to Step In For Srisaket Sor Rungvisai Against Carlos Cuadras


There’s been a big development involving the bout for the vacant WBC junior bantamweight title. Initially, former WBC 115 pound champs Carlos Cuadras (39-4-1 27 KOs) and Srisaket Sor Rungvisai were set to square off for the vacant title on February 5 at the Footprint Center in Phoenix, Arizona, live on DAZN. 

However, 3KingsBoxing.com has learned that Sor Rungvisai must withdraw after contracting COVID-19. Matchroom Boxing has announced that Jesse “Bam” Rodriguez (14-0, 10 KOs) has accepted an offer and will now face Cuadras for the belt. Upon hearing the news about Rungvisai, Cuadras said the following via a Matchroom press release. 

“I heard Rungvisai got sick, we arrived with my team last night to Phoenix. I hope he is stable and without complications.

“For my part, I’m ready and grateful with Teiken, Matchroom, and the WBC for the opportunity to fight Jesse, who is a good fighter.”

Carlos Cuadras – Former WBC Junior Bantamweight Champion

THE PLOT THICKENS

Rodriguez is ranked first by the WBO and third by the WBA at 108 pounds. He was scheduled to face Fernando Diaz on this same card. But with the chance to fight for a world title suddenly opened, the 22-year-old from  San Antonio, Texas jumped on it, feeling he is ready to take advantage.

“I’m very thankful for the opportunity to be fighting for the WBC World title. It’s always been a dream of mine to become a world champion and that dream will become a reality this weekend.

“I want to thank RGBA, Teiken, and Matchroom. Without them, this wouldn’t be possible. On Saturday night, San Antonio will have another World champion!”

Jesse Rodriguez – WBO #1 & WBA #3 Ranked Light Flyweight

TAKING A RISK

It will be interesting to see how Cuadras adjusts to a fighter who is younger and faster than his original opponent. But at age 33, the former champ has seen just about everything in the ring and is hungry to win a world title once again.

Insiders are very high on Rodriguez, feeling he’s a future world champion. Blessed speed, power, defense, and maturity beyond his years, the Texan seems to have it all. But the question is, “is this too big of a step too soon?”

Recently signing a multi-fight deal with Matchroom, Rodriguez and his team are making a gamble. However, some observers feel Cuadras has slipped and is not the fighter he once was. It’s going to be fascinating to see how things play out when the young upstart and the grizzled vet step into the ring. 

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By: Michael Wilson Jr.

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Michael is the host of boxing podcast "Pound 4 Pound Boxing Report" and is a writer/contributor for 3kingsboxing.com.