On July 15th, Delvin Rodriguez (pictured right above and below) and Pawel Wolak engaged in a ten round war on ESPN’s “Friday Night Fights” that has many boxing insiders calling it the leading candidate for the fight of the year. In an excellent battle of will, determination, and pure guts, Rodriguez and Wolak went toe-to-toe for their entire ten round jr. middleweight showdown before a sold-out crowd on Star Boxing’s show at the Roseland Ballroom in New York City. Wolak started the better of the two, but Rodriguez, who was coming off a year lay-off, picked up the pace in the middle rounds, and landed the much cleaner and harder punches down the stretch of the fight which in turn caused grotesque swelling of Wolak’s right eye. In the end, judge Tom Schreck scored the fight 97-93 for Rodriguez, but was overruled by judges Julie Lederman and Steve Weisfield, who both scored the fight 95-95, resulting in a majority draw. The war was an instant classic, so much so that ESPN re-aired the fight the following week, the firstever non-regularly scheduled reair for ESPN’s Friday Night Fights. Fans around the world have been clamoring and wondering when the rematch will take place and while Rodriguez, the warrior he is, expected and wanted the fight to take place immediately, Wolak has been singing a different tune.
“I am reading all these different reports that Wolak has signed with a new manager (Wolak dropped long-time manager Ivan Edwards following the fight and signed with Cameron Dunkin), and he is speaking about other fighters and fights, but I really haven’t heard him say anything about our rematch. This guy was supposed to be one of the roughest toughest guys in the sport, and we have a fight of the year like we did and it ends in a draw and now he doesn’t want to have a rematch? Everyone has been asking when the rematch will take place, but by the looks of it, he doesn’t want it. I even read one report that said he ultimately decided to fire his manager because his manager suggested he take the rematch with me and Pawel was “annoyed that he would even bring that up”. I had a lot of respect for Pawel before we fought, and him continuing the way he did in our fight with his eye like that I had even more respect for him, not a lot of people would have fought through that. But now, he seems to be avoiding me. If he is the real warrior he says he is, and all about pleasing the fans, then let’s make this rematch happen. The other fights can wait, we have business to finish.”