For the second time, boxing promoter Michelle Rosado, known as “Raging Babe," had to postpone her upcoming event, the Philly Special, due to the coronavirus.
The card was originally scheduled for March 27 at 2300 Arena, and rescheduled for June 19. The main event would have featured two upcoming Philadelphia lightweights, Damon Allen and Stevie Ortiz. It was set to be a classic North vs. West Philly battle.
The second date had to be rescheduled since Philadelphia remains in the “yellow” phase of Gov. Wolf’s plan to reopen the state, which prohibits nonessential businesses from reopening.
“It’s been crushing, because we have this stellar card with these competitive matchups and all these compelling stories behind the fighters,” Rosado said. “We were bringing back the neighborhood rivalries that make Philly such a great fight town.”
The situation has put Rosado in a tough position. Before the cancellation in March, the event was 66 tickets shy of selling out.
There have been talks to host the fights without spectators, but it would require a TV deal to help cover costs. Rosado said that she has been in talks with two TV networks, but the next step is seeing when Philadelphia will take its next step in allowing live sporting events.
“It belongs on television,” Rosado said. “It’s just as good as the stuff as we’re seeing on TV right now. These are the type of fights that make people really love boxing.”
During this process, Rosado has communicated with the fighters weekly, and everyone still wants to fight. She encourages them to stay in shape and workout because at this point, they may not get a normal preparation period.
“When it’s go-time, you may have only four weeks to get ready,” Rosado said. “I’m just trying to keep them motivated by any means to stay ready and in return I think they appreciate that because they’re telling me too, ‘keep your head up, we got this, we’re going to put on a show.' ”
Rosado is hoping for an August return, but realistically she believes September remains the most likely month for the card.