- Dan Rafael, ESPN Senior Writer
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Main Events won a purse bid on Thursday for the right to promote the junior middleweight title eliminator between Gabriel Rosado -- who has distinguished himself in recent fights on Main Events' NBC Sports Net "Fight Night" series -- and Charles Whitaker.
The winner of the bout will become the mandatory challenger for titleholder Cornelius "K9" Bundrage.
Main Events was the lone bidder and won with an offer of just $10,000. Under the IBF's rules, Whitaker is entitled to 60 percent ($6,000), with Rosado entitled to 40 percent ($4,000).
Main Events' Kathy Duva told me that if the fight is signed, it would go on either the Tomasz Adamek-Travis Walker pay-per-view undercard on Sept. 8 or the Sept. 21 "Fight Night" card.
If the fighters agree to the bout, Main Events almost certainly would bump up the purses from the paltry figure they would technically be due under the terms of the purse bid, especially with the company having six-figure dates on NBC Sports Net. Main Events put in such a low bid most likely because there was nobody else at the purse offer and the promoter knew it would win regardless of its bid. Usually promoters have multiple offers ready to go in sealed envelopes and pick one to use depending on who else might show up to bid. When nobody else showed for this one, Main Events went with the lowest bid to secure the rights to the bout.
"We do not yet know on which one of our September shows this fight would be placed," Duva said. "No need to speculate about anything until signed contracts are returned."
Duva, who works with Rosado, said a contract was sent to Whitaker's promoter.
"He has 15 days to return it to us signed," Duva said. "If he does, we have a fight. We will not announce exactly where we intend for the fight to take place until we have a signed contract from Whittaker."
Philadelphia's Rosado (20-5, 12 KOs), 26, has won six fights in a row since late 2010, including his past two in impressive fashion on "Fight Night." He dominated Jesus Soto Karass in a fifth-round knockout in January and then stopped longtime contender Sechew Powell in the ninth round on June 1.
Whitaker (38-12-2, 23 KOs), 38, of the Cayman Islands, has won 14 consecutive fights since 2004, albeit against very limited competition.