“Pawel Wolak’s a warrior that likes to come forward and he’s a pressure fighter, and he’s going to do whatever he can to stay on top of me. I can box, but I can also stay there if he wants to and trade,” said Rodriguez (25-5-3, 14 KOs), a Dominican Republic-born resident of Danbury, Conn.
“I’m not just looking for the eye again. I’m a combination puncher. I’m also a boxer. So I’m not just looking to do one thing. It’s going to be another great fight — as good or even better than the first one.”
Even if Rodriguez does target the eye, that won’t matter to Wolak, who said the swelling was gone nearly two weeks after the fight.
“The only thing that I’m trying to do is to win this time, for good,” said Wolak (29-1-1, 19 KOs), a Polish-born resident of Mount Arlington, N.J., with an unbeaten streak of 8-0-1, including five knockouts.
“Whatever happens after that, it’s all going to fall into place. I’m just there to win. It’s going to be a good fight. I hope that it is.”
When the final bell rings, whatever the result, Rodriguez and Wolak each said they believe they could become friends.
“Listen, I do respect Delvin, until he puts plaster in his gloves — but that’s another story,” said Wolak. “I would not mind, after the fight is over, I don’t mind having a drink with him. He’s definitely alright by me.”
“Why not? I respect everybody, and he seems like a pretty cool guy. So if we do bump into each other after the fight, I’m sure we will have a couple of drinks together. But once you’re in that ring, it’s a different story,” said Rodriguez.
“It’s a war. He’s not my friend anymore. That’s how it is. That’s the way that I look at it. It doesn’t matter how much you talk outside of the ring. Once you step into the ring, it’s a different story. All of that talks in the ring is the punches.”
Lem Satterfield can be reached at email@example.com