Jesse Rodriguez has long envisioned winning major titles as high as the 130-pound division by the time his career is through.

The next step he will take to become a multi-division champion will actually move towards a lower weight. has learned that plans are in place for Rodriguez to next challenge for the WBO flyweight title. The unbeaten WBC junior bantamweight titlist is current in attendance for the 35th annual WBO convention, where the Ratings portion is expected to reveal that the 112-pound title will become available.

“I believe my next fight will be at 112, for sure,” Rodriguez confirmed on the WBO Convention podcast, though not specifying fighting for the yet-to-be-available title. “Making 112 is not gonna be a problem. I make 115 fairly easy, so those three more pounds won’t be difficult at all. It’s not going to affect what I do outside the ring.”

Current flyweight titlist Junto Nakatani is expected to vacate as he will campaign at junior bantamweight. His first official fight at the weight will come against former unified strawweight titlist and current top contender Francisco ‘Chihuas’ Rodriguez on November 1 at Saitama Arena in Saitama, Japan. The proposal for Rodriguez to fight for the vacant title would have to—but is expected—to be approved by the WBO during that portion of the convention.

Rodriguez (17-0, 11KOs) claimed the WBC junior bantamweight title in a twelve-round, unanimous decision over former champ Carlos Cuadras on February 5 in Phoenix, Arizona. The opportunity came on short notice for Rodriguez, who was training for a regional flyweight title fight when he got the call to replace an ill Srisaket Sor Rungvisai barely a week ahead of the DAZN-aired show.

Two title defenses have followed, including a stirring eighth-round knockout of Sor Rungvisai on June 25 in Rodriguez’s San Antonio hometown. The 22-year-old prodigious talent returned less than three months later, outpointing two-time title challenger Israel Gonzalez on the undercard of the Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez-Gennadiy Golovkin trilogy clash on September 17 in Las Vegas.

There was industry-wide hope of Rodriguez ambitiously pushing for a fourth fight in 2022 at a time when most top fighters are lucky to fight more than once per year. Rodriguez himself confirmed that he is done for the year, staying active in the gym but likely to open training camp within the next month or two in preparation to challenge for his second divisional title in either January or February.  

Once that is accomplished, the next stated targets are the division’s top two fighters—IBF flyweight titlist Sunny Edwards (18-0, 4KOs) and WBC claimant Julio Cesar ‘El Rey’ Martinez (18-2, 14KOs; 2ND).

“Early next year, two-division world champion for sure,” Rodriguez guaranteed. “After I pick up this title, I want to unify against Sunny Edwards or Rey Martinez. Either of those fights, they both interest me. It will be big for the division and big for San Antonio.”

Jake Donovan is a senior writer for Twitter: @JakeNDaBox