186 total views, 5 views today OXON HILL – Gary Russell, Jr. from Capitol Heights defended his World Boxing Council Featherweight World Championship with a unanimous decision over the No. 1 contender and undefeated fighter Joseph Diaz at the MGM National Harbor on May 19. The fight was shown on Showtime Championship Boxing. Russell (29-1) arguably has […]
187 total views, 6 views today
OXON HILL – Gary Russell, Jr. from Capitol Heights defended his World Boxing Council Featherweight World Championship with a unanimous decision over the No. 1 contender and undefeated fighter Joseph Diaz at the MGM National Harbor on May 19.
The fight was shown on Showtime Championship Boxing.
Russell (29-1) arguably has the fastest hands in the sport. He constantly tattooed Diaz’s face for 12 rounds. He mixed in some hard body shots while absorbing vicious shots to his body from Diaz.
One judge scored the fight 115-113 (7 rounds to 5), and the other two judges saw it 117-111 (9 rounds to 3), all for Russell.
Diaz, 25, said he learned so much from fighting Russell.
“The game plan was to break him down with body shots, but that did not work,” Diaz said. “He was in tremendous shape. Most fighters would have given in to shots like that.”
It then became a guessing game for Diaz (26-1).
“He tried to keep me guessing with effective jabs. Not hard jabs, but good jabs,” Russell said. “He kept me from coming after him because I was thinking that he would land those fast combinations.”
Diaz had red bruises all over his face.
Russell, 29, started each round with quick jabs and combinations to Diaz’s face. Russell threw a personal best 587 jabs.
Gary wanted a knockout for his hometown fans.
“I am a little disappointed,” Russell said. “I wanted to get him up out of there. I hurt my jab hand in either the second or third round.”
Russell has had hand injuries in the past, but that did not stop him.
“We are warriors, and I was not going to let the hand stop me from jabbing,” Russell said. “He could not get past my jab. He could not deal with my hand speed or my boxing ability.”
Russell was the most skillful fighter that night.
The Russell fighters, all trained by their dad, Gary Russell, Sr., pride themselves on making adjustments during a round.
“We made adjustments throughout the fight. We would not allow him to get comfortable and do what he wanted,” Russell, Jr. said. “Boxing is hit and not get hit. It is a strategic sport.”
His younger brothers also won their fights. Gary Antonio Russell improved to 11-0 with a 5 round TKO over Jonathan Lecona. Gary Antuanne Russell, the 2016 Olympian destroyed his opponent, Wilmer Rodriguez, who looked like he recently left the buffet and was eager to get back there, with a first round pummeling. He is now 5-0. A huge crowd went home all smiles as the hometown champion kept his belt in Prince George’s County.