In the opening bout of the May 4th pay-per-view headlined by Floyd Mayweather and Robert Guerrero, up-and-coming J’Leon Love (16-0, 8 knockouts) took on always tough, Gabe Rosado (21-7, 12 knockouts). Going into the bout, many were surprised by Love’s choice to take on what seemed like such a step up in competition, his bout with Rosado still seemed to leave more questions than it did answer them.
The fight started in much the same way as it ended, with Love and Rosado engaging in a bout that saw both relatively even in just about every regard. One thing that made the bout an absolute nightmare to score was the fact that each fighter managed to find success in imposing certain aspects of their gameplan.
Love managed to relatively quell the threat of Rosado’s looming power by implementing a stiff jab, mixed with the occasional power shots, and much better foot work. For Rosado, the gameplan also involved use of a jab, but for the sake of neutralizing Rosado’s significant reach advantage. With Love at bay, Rosado hoped to counter-punch effectively enough to stop the much bigger middleweight.
With both fighters managing to cancel out their opponents gameplans, it turned into the type of contest where one determined a winner based on whether they thought more total punches (Love) or more power punches (Rosado) would determine the winner of the bout. With each round being so close, it was Rosado who managed to offer the biggest moments of clarity after scoring a huge knockdown against Love in the 6th round. The fight managed to follow the same pattern set by both fighters earlier, but once again Rosado managed to take over the fight in the final round.
This strong finish by Rosado seemed to be the deciding factor in awarding Rosado the fight on most people’s cards, but the judges had a different outcome in mind. The judges awarded the split decision victory to j’Leon Love on the scores of: (94-95), (97-92), and (95-94).
Although many disagreed with the ultimate outcome of the fight, there’s no ignoring the fact that it was a tough one to score. Regardless of the official outcome, don’t be surprised to see a rematch between both fighters.