Television: ESPN2 (USA)
Time: 10:00PM ET / 7:00PM PT
Delvin Rodriguez 27(15)-6-3 vs. Freddy Hernandez 30(20)-4
Rodriguez recently blew away the previously undefeated George Tahdooahnippah in 6 rounds when he was last on Friday Night Fights. The fight probably should have been stopped earlier, but as it stands that win made Rodriguez look very good.
However, this should be tempered with the acknowledgment that in his previous fight against Austin Trout, Rodriguez failed for the second time to win a world title. So while Rodriguez is good — arguably a top 10 light middleweight — he’s by no means elite.
That isn’t to say that he can’t win a world title, but it is to say he’d probably have a lot more luck fighting against an Ishe Smith than a Canelo. So maybe after 2 or 3 straight wins, he might find himself back in title contention.
Hernandez, for his part, is a decent fighter too but his career nowadays is pretty much defined as that of a gatekeeper. He has two losses in a row and is 3-3 in his last 6 fights. However, you have to consider who he’s lost to during that time: Demetrius Andrade, Erislandy Lara, and Andre Berto. These are elite-level talents in the welterweight and light middleweight divisions.
Against 2nd tier opposition, Hernandez has done quite well for himself with wins over Luis Collazo, DeMarcus Corley, Damian Frias, Anthony Lee Montoya, and Jesus Soto Karass.
This is a crossroads fight of sorts. Does Rodriguez have one more run at a world title in him? Or is he destined to be a gatekeeper like Hernandez is?
Prediction: Rodriguez by UD.
Issouf Kinda 16(6)-0 vs. Chris Howard 15(7)-2-1
This is a good test for Kinda.
Kinda is a prospect who is coming off a KO win over Javier Loya, and already has a decent win over journeyman Mike Arnaoutis. He still needs a few more wins over live bodies before it’s worth getting excited about him, though.
Howard is a good opponent. He doesn’t have as much promise as Kinda but he’s coming off a KO win and is 4-2 in his last 6 fights. Howard has two good wins over Bayan Jargal and Leon Bobo. However, he’s lost to Mark Salser and Arash Usmanee.
Prediciont: Kinda by UD.