PHILLY BOXING HISTORY                                                                              July 29, 2010


Home Boxers Fights Arenas Non-Boxers Gyms Relics More About Contact




The cycle of waiting for the hotly anticipated Derek Ennis vs. Gabriel Rosado fight is coming to a close. For more than two months this all-Philly match has been set and slowly approaching on the radar of local boxing fans. The time is almost here. The fighters will weigh in tonight at the South Philly Arena, and al little more than twenty-four hours later, will step into the ring for their battle.

The Philly vs. Philly angle of this bout has been chewed on by writers, fans, insiders, and outsiders. Perhaps here at Philly Boxing History we've done the most chewing. We've wondered what the fallout of two rising local stars facing each other might be. We've worried that they might ruin each other a la Charley Scott and Sugar Hart. And we've explored the downside of such local pairings. But mostly, we've been astonished that it has finally happened again. A well matched, meaningful Philly vs. Philly fight for all of us to marvel. We've seen plenty of cross-town matches between one guy on the way up and one guy on the way down, as well as fights between two guys who are so far before (or past) their primes, that the Philly vs. Philly thing doesn't matter.

But Ennis and Rosado will face off at a critical crossroads of their budding careers when the result of the fight really matters. That's exciting. That's what can make a fight really good. If there is nothing at stake, then what happens in the ring would not really matter. If there is nothing at stake, then the fight is reduced to the scale of a pick up basketball game. But this is no pick up basketball game. This is a top-level fight between two Philadelphia fighters. And it doesn't get better than that.

At this moment, these guys couldn't be matched in a better fight. This is the gateway. The winner of this fight moves forward. The loser goes back to the drawing board. That they will be doing this in the ring, before their hometown fans, over twelve rounds, reminds everyone involved that this is for real.

On Friday night, when Ennis and Rosado look across the ring at each other, they will each see the final hurdle of their journey to the doorstep of the big time. Ennis needs to beat Rosado, and Rosado needs to defeat Ennis. The winner graduates to the next level, gets the belt, receives a top-10 ranking, and takes the bragging rights in a tough fight town.

All this sets the stage for something special - a real fight. And that is what Philly Boxing is all about. Our history is about matches like this. These two may eventually vie for a world title, but they are Philly fighters and will always be measured as such. This fight will distinguish them and add them to the list of great cross-town rivalries. Other active Philly boxers should long for a similar fight for themselves. Fighters should want to be the best in their city (especially here) before moving on. This should be the spirit of boxing, and the attitude of a winning fighter. Boxing has always been about fighters proving themselves. Sure money has also always be part of the equation, but the great ones have been driven by the need to be the best. Their desire to win and to prove themselves outweighed their want for money, undefeated records, and false claims of greatness. They simply wanted to be the best, and that starts at home.

Ennis and Rosado both want this victory. They know a win on Friday will benefit their climb greatly. But what they might not realize is that they have been given a very real chance to prove themselves. This is what it is all about. And that is the upside of cross-town rivalries.

Ennis with his co-managers Moz Gonzalez and Eddie Woods


Rosado with trainer his Billy Briscoe and his father


Bozy Ennis, father and trainer of the USBA champ





John DiSanto - News & Notes - July 29, 2010