ATLANTIC CITY - After being away from the ring for two years, undefeated heavyweight David "Nino" Rodriguez, 36-0, 34 KOs, gets his chance to finally return to his promising boxing career, on December 14th at Resorts International Hotel and Casino in Atlantic City. His 6-round bout against Darnell Wilson, 24-17-3, 20 KOs, is one of the main supporting attractions on a packed fight card that features a dynamite double header, with heavyweights Amir Mansour and Kelvin Price in the 10-round main event and Ryan Coyne vs. Lionell Thompson as the 10-round light heavyweight co-feature. The two feature bouts will be nationally televised on the NBC Sports Network Fight Night series. The Rodriguez-Wilson bout takes place off-TV.
For Rodriguez, just getting back to business after a hellish 24 months represents a personal redemption for the El Paso, TX native. However, Rodriguez won't just settle for the moral victory of coming back from the mountain of adversity that nearly ended both his life and his boxing career. Against Wilson, Rodriguez seeks a win that will reboot a career that was so filled with potential before the layoff began.
Rodriguez has topped every opponent he's faced, and is riding a nine-bout knockout streak, including a pair of showy stoppages against Owen Beck and Byron Polley in 2011. After those victories, Rodriguez seemed poised for a climb up the heavyweight rankings. However, a series of devastating setbacks stopped the 6' 4", 250-pound fighter in his tracks.
Shortly after his win over Polley in December 2011, Rodriguez was the victim of a knife attack. The assault left his face scarred, but miraculously, he was still alive and able to fight. However, after surgery and a lengthy rehab, Rodriguez returned to the gym, only to badly injure his knee. The injury required surgery, as well as another long recovery. Such adversity may have discouraged a weaker person, but Rodriguez proved he was a fighter by battling back.
On December 14th, Rodriguez steps back into the ring to get on with his dream of becoming heavyweight champion of the world. His challenge that night will be seasoned pro Darnell "Ding-A-Ling Man" Wilson. It's a tough assignment, especially given the extended time off, but Rodriguez has shown the ability to bounce back like few others ever have.
When the bell rings, Rodriguez will be ready for redemption, and plans to send a message to the rest of the heavyweight division that he is finally back to boxing for good.