LAS VEGAS (February 20, 2021) — Elvis Rodriguez’ appearances in Top Rank’s Bubble inside MGM Grand Conference Center have been both explosive and brief. Tonight’s assignment was eight rounds with Luis Alberto Veron – a rangy 28 year old from Buenos Aires, Argentina.
The young southpaw Dominican Super Lightweight was pressed early by Veron (18-3-2, 9 KOs), who stepped in to shoot his jab. Rodriguez (11-0-1, 10 KOs) remained poised. Veron landed a couple of right hooks to the waistline. The Argentine’s head movement was unpredictable through the first round. Rodriguez worked his jab sparingly, conserving energy until he had a better read on his opponent.
Veron’s erky-jerky movement, paired with his frequent level changes, created openings to Rodriguez’ body early in Round 2. Both men boxed sharply. Rodriguez took some swings looking to make contact with his left hand.
The action remained well-contested through the third frame. Rodriguez landed a sweeping right hook inside a Veron punch, at the bell, that briefly fazed the Argentine. Veron connected with a winging right hook to Rodriguez’ body late in the subsequent round.
Veron went back to the body in Round 5. Rodriguez picked up his pace in Round 5, and became more aggressive with his power punching. Veron never flinched, or left the pocket, indicating why he’d never been stopped.
Veron continued to hustle in the opening moments of Round 6. Rodriguez stepped around and landed a solid left hook to Veron’s body. Near the minute mark the Dominican landed a hard right hook over a Veron punch. Before the end of the round he landed his second telling right uppercut of the round.
Both fighters attacked the body of the other to open Round 7. Veron started showing swelling under his left eye. He started to move like fatigue was setting in, and his movement was less tight. Rodriguez threw heavy right hooks to Veron’s body.
Two rounds into uncharted waters, Rodriguez started targeting Veron’s swollen eye. He threw right hooks and his uppercut. Veron’s shots had little steam on them, but he continued to punch and move. Rodriguez closed with some power left hands and a right hook to Veron’s body. Surprisingly, Veron stayed in the pocket and returned with a short flurry of his own, just ahead of the final bell.
The official decision was 78-74, 79-73 and 79-73 for a well-contested unanimous victory for Rodriguez. The 25-year old prospect’s Elvis guitar celebration was more fitting for an acoustic set, but he never became visibly frustrated with being forced to hear scorecards for his win to be official.
All photos by Mikey Williams/Top Rank via Getty Images