In the NBC Fight Night opener, Mexican Jesus Soto-Karass (24-6-3 entering) took on hometowner Gabriel Rosado(18-5 entering) in a junior middleweight scrap which unfolded at the Asylum Arena in Philly on saturday night. The Philly guy brought it to his foe early. His hands looked quick and his punches crisp and fluid. He had the Mexican in trouble in round four. Trapped on the ropes, S-K was eating as ref Steve Smoger stared hard. “One guy is very fast and one is very slow,” analyst Freddie Roach said. A cut on Karass' left eye from the second dripped and we wondered how much longer he could go.
In the fifth, Smoger saw enough, as Karass was on weak legs and was eating too many clean shots. The time of the stop, a TKO, was 2:06 elapsed in the fifth.
Rosado for sure is right there with anyone in that division; he's always been a talent, but was overlooked because he lost fights early.
Props to him for giving a shoutout to his grandma, who is 102 years old, and to Russell Peltz and Kathy Duva for looking to change the paradigm, to a more UFC-style outlook. Fans want skilled, hungry fighters facing other skilled, hungry fighters, and don't so much care about a blemish-free record. Hopefully, next time we see Rosado up against a top fiver at 154. He and the fans deserve it.