Jesse ‘Bam’ Rodriguez (16-0, 11 KOs) is making a serious push for consideration as boxing’s 2022 Fighter of the Year.
The 22-year-old is the youngest champion in the sport, and the San Antonio native delivered in front of his home fans in supreme style. Rodriguez defended his WBC super-flyweight title by eighth-round TKO over former champion Srisaket Sor Rungvisai (50-6-1, 43 KOs), handing the Thai fighter his first stoppage loss since his second pro fight in 2009.
Rodriguez was so much faster, sharper, and more accurate than Sor Rungvisai. He was cutting great angles to get punches off and he connected on over half of his total punches over the course of the bout. ‘Bam’ scored a knockdown in round seven and then just swarmed Srisaket with an onslaught of devastating punches to force a standing stoppage in the eighth.
What’s an interesting backstory here is the fact that Sor Rungvisai withdrawing from his February fight against Carlos Cuadras opened the door for Rodriguez to take the fight on short notice and beat Cuadras to take the vacant WBC title. Four months later he takes on Sor Rungvisai and issues a first-class beatdown.
Watch full highlights above, or if you’ve not got that time on your hands then here’s the knockdown and the finish below.
No doubt now that Rodriguez, who can compete anywhere from light flyweight (108 lbs) to flyweight (112 lbs) to super flyweight (115 lbs), has made a name for himself with these back-to-back performances. It feels like the sky’s the limit for him and he’s undoubtedly one of the sport’s brightest young talents.