Despite long odds – and an even longer plane ride – Camden, New Jersey native Jason Sosa used a lethal left hook to defy the critics and non believers, knocking out world champion Javier Fortuna in round 11 to win the WBA featherweight title at the Capital Gym in Beijing, China.
The betting line was as high as 17-to-1 in favor of the Premier Boxing Champions signee Fortuna before bell time. Sensing a worthwhile long shot, savvy gamblers put a lot of late money on Sosa which dropped the line near 7-to-1 when the fight began.
The fight was so remote that there was no TV broadcast or internet streams for this show which happened at 10 AM Eastern Time. It was the perfect setting for a modern day boxing upset.
Multiple reports suggest that it was a come from behind knockout for Sosa, a fighter who was developed in the Peltz boxing fold. The New Jersey native was knocked to the canvas in round five and was likely down on all scorecards as the fight headed into the championship rounds.
Sources say a late Sosa adjustment turned the tide. Kicking up the intensity, “Canito” knocked Fortuna down in round 10, and then finished the job less than three minutes later, closing the show at the 0:45 mark of round 11.
With the victory Sosa improves to 19-1-4, 15 KOs while the former champ Javier “El Abejon” Fortuna suffers his first career loss, falling to 29-1-1, 21 KOs.
Congrats to Team Sosa, Peltz Boxing and Top Rank Boxing on the outstanding victory on the other side of the globe. This win ends a long losing streak for local fighters competing at the championship level of the sport.
The HBO fights from the Turning Stone Resort Casino in Verona, NY have concluded. All three local fighters came in as betting underdogs. All three put up good fights but North Philly’s “King” Gabriel Rosado was the only one to come out victorious in a night full of surprises.
The Rosado vs. Joshua Clottey fight was an appetizer of sorts being shown on HBO Latino before the two main fights switched to the primary network.
It was a close fight with Rosado’s higher activity rate being the difference. Clottey (39-5, 22 KOs) was alive early, but faded a bit down the stretch as Rosado (22-9, 13 KOs), came on strong as the later rounds approached.
The final scores after 10 rounds of action were 97-93, 97-93 and 96-94. Rosado ends a five-fight streak without a victory.
It was a good showing for his first bout under new trainer Fernando Vargas. There have been whispers that Rosado could be in line to fight Canelo Alvarez in 2016.
We are hours away from bell-time and the Las Vegas book makers has released betting odds for the upcoming HBO Boxing bouts tonight in Verona, New York. All fighters with Philadelphia connections have been deemed underdogs in the bouts.
The lines are likely to fluctuate a bit as more money is put on the table. Who – if anyone – will pull off an “upset” tonight?
Scroll down to get the official weights, quotes and lines in regards to the fights with a Philly connection.
Luis Ortiz is a slight favorite over Bryant Jennings – coming in just under 1.5-to-1.
Below is what the fighters had to say about as their training camp comes to a close this week.
BRYANT “BYE BYE” JENNINGS, Former Heavyweight World Title Challenger:
“The weather is warm out here in Florida, and John David Jackson is doing a great job as my new trainer. He’s a man that knows the fight game being that he was a fighter himself, a former world champion to be exact. The little things he’s showing me are making a big difference. I was happy that my promoter Gary Shaw came out to visit and see the progress I have made. We’re out here doing it. I believe I’ve become a better fighter, and it will show come fight night.
“This is a big fight for the heavyweight division. The interim WBA World heavyweight title is on the line. The winner will move on to bigger and better things. Everyone says he has a lot of power but his opposition is suspect. He’s a big slugger and I’m a boxer that gives a lot of movement. I believe I’m the one with the better skills and better pro experience. I’m winning this fight.
“I think it’s great. The sport needs to keep its integrity. Ortiz is a good fighter but he’s already shown that he has some insecurities. When a fighter gets caught cheating while using steroids to get an edge says a lot about that person. He paid his dues and now it’s time to fight. With VADA testing installed for this fight, everyone will be on an even playing field.
“With Klitschko losing to Fury, the heavyweight division is wide open. There are a lot of hungry fighters out there ready to take charge and I’m one of them. I know I got what it takes to become a world champion. The heavyweight division is mine to be conquered.”
They come from Camden, NJ, Philadelphia, PA, and Reading, PA, and all six can fight. They have a combined record of 79-7-8, with 32 knockouts.
JASON SOSA, 18-1-3 (14) of Camden, NJ, has a Dec. 19 date with Nicholas Walters, 26-0 (21), of Montego Bay, Jamaica, the former WBA Featherweight Champion. They collide over 10 rounds—or less—at the Turning Stone Resort and Casino in Verona, NY. Heavyweights Bryant “By By” Jennings, of Philadelphia, and Luis Ortiz, of Havana, Cuba, meet in the main event.
Ranked No. 8 by the IBF and No. 13 in the WBO, Sosa faces his biggest test against Walters, who lost his title in June when he failed to make the 126-pound featherweight limit. Walters has fought over the featherweight limit in 10 of his 26 fights.
In a surprise announcement, Camden’s Jason Sosa is said to have been approved to face the undefeated Nicholas “Axeman” Walters – a world champion at 126 lbs who is making a jump up to the 130 pound division in the co-feature.
Congrats to Camden’s Jason Sosa (18-1-3, 14 Kos), who continues to punch his way into the world Jr. Lightweight contender picture, this time by scoring a 6th round knockout win over Jorge Pazos of Guamuchil, Sinaloa, Mexico in the main event of Philadelphia’s first ever Puerto Rican Boxing Classic.
By all accounts, Pazos never stood a chance this past Friday night as the IBF’s #10 rated Jr. Lightweight wasted no time going to work on his outgunned opponent at the 2300 Arena in South Philadelphia.
Sosa’s 13th consecutive knockout win gives the boxing world a not-so-subtle reminder that the time has come to test the waters against higher level competition. He is currently the highest rated American in the IBF ratings with solid, yet non-distinguished fighters sitting ahead of him in the ranking order.
While the KO streak is impressive, it must be noted that Sosa’s last three opponents came to the ring saddled with multi-fight losing streaks. With Top Rank Boxing now included as part of his promotional team, the opportunity to test his skills against high-class opposition on a bigger stage should be near.
We know he can deliver the pain, pretty soon we will see what happens when the lights get brighter and the stakes are higher. There are more than a few people out there who would bet good money saying that “El Canito” gets the job done when the time finally comes.
Time will tell the full story. Until then give a shout out to this rising 27 year old fighter.