By Andrew Graves @andrewgravess
This Saturday night on Showtime, WBO Middleweight champion Peter Quillin looks to defend his title for the second time against the always tough Gabriel Rosado on the Bernard Hopkins-Karo Murat undercard from Atlantic City, New Jersey. Quillin, A.K.A. “Kid Chocolate,” is 30-years old, he is 29-0 with 21 knockouts, and he is currently rated 3rd according to boxrec.com. He is a confident, competent champion who has overcome a great deal of obstacles in his career, and in this fight he faces another world class opponent who has battled some of the best the division has to offer.
Gabriel Rosado, a 27-year old from Philadelphia, is 21-6 with 13 knockouts, he is currently rated 15th according to boxrec.com, and prior to his TKO loss to 2nd rated Gennady Golovkin back in January, he had won 7 fights in a row (including TKO wins over 11th rated Jesus Soto Karass, and 60th rated Charles Whitaker). He is one of the most exciting fighters in the sport, and his “full-out” approach should guarantee plenty of action in this highly anticipated lead up to the night’s main event.
So be sure to tune in to Showtime this Saturday night beginning at 9:00 pm ET to see the WBO Middleweight Championship between Peter Quillin and Gabriel Rosado, as part of a tripleheader that also features the IBF Light Heavyweight championship between Bernard Hopkins and Karo Murat, and a heavyweight bout featuring Deontay Wilder and Nicolai Firtha.
Peter Quillin is an intelligent boxer with good hand speed and serviceable defensive ability who can change the dynamic of a fight with his power. He is a very good offensive fighter, who throws combinations well, he has good power in his straight right hand, and he has demonstrated the ability to take a punch well. In his latest fight with Fernando Guerrero, Quillin landed 49% of 210 power shots and was able to break his opponent down over 7 rounds. In this fight, Quillin must impose his will on his smaller opponent in a similar manner (Rosado has fought just 3 fights at 160 pounds in his entire career), and he must either throw at a higher rate than he is accustomed to (40.7 punches per round), or he must see to it that every punch he throws counts. Quillin has shown some defensive deficiencies in the past (Guerrero landed 40% of his total punches against him), but Gabriel Rosado is far from a defensive wizard himself (he got hit 42% of the time against Gennady Golovkin) so resilience will definitely be more important than elusiveness to the outcome of this fight.
For Gabriel Rosado, an aggressive, gutsy fighter with good work ethic and accuracy, this is a fight that he can win if he stays disciplined, shoots straighter shots, and doesn’t get mixed up in a brawl. He is a more accurate puncher (about 35.2% in his 3 fights leading up to Golovkin), he has a good sense of distance, and he has a slight height and reach advantage in this fight (1”). If he can box, use his footwork to avoid power shots, and work in and out with combinations often I think he can win; but the power of Quillin is the X-factor, and having been TKO’d twice already in his career, Rosado doesn’t want to tempt fate.
This is a very interesting matchup. Rosado is typically a pressure fighter who likes to stay close and commit to the body, but in this fight, his size and reach advantage, as well as the power of Quillin, should have him considering an attack from outside in. He fought very well against 64th rated J’Leon Love back in May of this year (and probably deserved the decision), but against an elite-level fighter like Quillin, a fighter with a 72% and KO rate and KO wins in 6 of his last 8 fights, Rosado may struggle to find the appropriate distance.
In the end, I think this fight could go either way, and I expect Rosado to be very competitive all the way up to the end. However, I simply think Quillin has too many offensive tools for Rosado, and despite early successes, I think Rosado will wilt down the stretch as the power punching begins to take its toll. Therefore, in a very entertaining fight I think Quillin will start to separate himself from the 6th round on, and I believe he will land the bigger, more damaging punches and force a stoppage somewhere between the 9th and 10th rounds.