Rodriguez vs Escalera: Why Super Middleweight Bout Will End in Knockout

Mike ShiekmanFeatured ColumnistSeptember 29, 2012

Mar 17; New York, NY, USA; Edwin Rodriguez celebrates his 10 round unanimous decision win over Donovan George at the Theater at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Ed Mulholland-US PRESSWIRE
Ed Mulholland-US PRESSWIRE

A knockout will determine the USBA super middleweight champion Saturday night.

In a battle of undefeated fighters, Edwin Rodriguez and Jason Escalera square off, both with the highest knockout percentages of their division (via

These big hitters won't play defense and try to shy away from contact. Each fighter's game is taking and making big swings. With so much on the line in this fight, not Rodriguez not Escalera is changing their fighting style for the other. They will both fight their own fight.

The fight will be broadcast on HBO's After Dark, providing both fighters with a nationwide audience. As a result, both will be going for the haymaker to make an impression in front of so many viewers.

The best bet for a knockout would be Escalera, who loves going for the kill shot. He's won his 14 decisions by knockout decision 12 times.

The two fighters come into this bout with a lot in common. They are both 27 and have not lost a match. Rodriguez comes in as the hotter fighter, beating Don George to win the super middleweight belt, while Escalera disappointed when he drew against Nick Brinson.

Rodriguez has the better resume overall, with 27 fights to his name. That's 13 more professional fights that he can relate to during this matchup.

He cannot underestimate the young gun Escalera, though. He does't have too much professional experience, but has made waves with his power style and never-back-down mentality.

Rodriguez's trainer Ronny Shields talked about his fighter's strategy with HBO Boxing:

"Edwin is going to fight almost the same kind of fight he had with Donovan George, but this time I want Edwin to knock him out," Shields says. "The reason is this guy is more of a swinger than a banger, so you have to be careful when you are backing up that he doesn't catch you with one of those swings and hurts you."

There will be a ton of those swings. Rodriguez will hope he doesn't get hit with one, but he'll be going for the haymaker as well.

One the match starts, it's only a matter of time.