Magsayo dethrones one-armed Russell

20220120 Showtime Russell V Magsayo Atlantic City Fight Night Westcott 73
Photo: Amanda Westcott/SHOWTIME

WBC mandatory challenger Mark Magsayo (24-0, 16 KOs) dethroned WBC featherweight champion Gary Russell Jr. (31-2, 18 KOs) by twelve round majority decision on Saturday night at the Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa in Atlantic City, NJ. Magsayo had some early success. Southpaw Russell injured his right shoulder in round four and essentially fought one-handed the rest of the way, throwing virtually zero jabs. Magsayo outworked and outlanded Russell by a wide margin in power punches 259-140. Scores were 114-114, 115-113, 115-113. Entering the fight, Russell was boxing’s longest-reigning champion.

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  • just shows how skilled Russell is almost won one handed wonder if there is a rematch clause!

    • yes it all that Filipino negativity a fit Russell would have easily beat him

    • With all the time he’s taken off there’s really no excuse for him not to have gotten the tendon taken care of. He wasted his prime. Close or not, more skilled or not- doesn’t matter. GRJ wasted his time , fans time, contenders time therefore no one will care or clamor for a rematch. Good bye!

    • How could he almost win by basically trying to avoid being hit the entire fight?

    • did you really watch that fight mate? Before that injury happened that Filipino is beating russel so hard and no excuse for that. They both prepare for that fight but only will reign supreme and that is Magsayo.

  • Wish it didn’t have to go like that with an injury, but given his age and his inactivity, I suppose that shouldn’t be an entirely unexpected way for Gary Russell to lose.
    I wouldn’t be all that surprised if he never fought again.

    • I had it 11-1. 9-3 at best. Russell refused to engage all fight. Having decent defense is fine, but there was nothing at all on the offensive side. He tried to stink out a win, and the judges did their best to help out.

  • Finally someone willing to fight the other champions won, Russell Jr over rated and over aged,

  • I put a little money on Magsayo to win because the Russell camp seemed not in order. I do not want to see a rematch because Russell, Jr. is far too inactive for my taste. Let’s see an active Magsayo face challenges from other active fighters. Congrats to Magsayo.

    Defensively, Russell fought well, but he also need an impactful offense, which was missing from Russell, Jr. I believe an extremely inactive Russell, Jr. should retire.

    • I did also because of age and inactivity-this fight is a good example of why not to bet heavy favorites. Betting underdogs who have a reasonable chance to win can be profitable even though you will lose more often than you win.

  • There are takeaways to be learned from Russell in this fight; long inactivity and advancing age adds up to injury prone issues in any fighter. Russell could have earned more cash in his bank account fighting more often and keeping active. Russell may have been within his rights to only fight a few times over 3 years, but kind of glad to see a new champion who can bring some new action into the division. Maybe Magsayo will fight more often and provide us with more entertainment than Russell. Russell still refused to give Magsayo total credit for the victory after the fight regardless of the hurt shoulder. Russell claimed he gave Magsayo a lesson in boxing. Based on my observation, Magsayo taught Russell a lesson that timing is critical with counters especially when moving straight in. Russell’s body will be sore the next few days.

    I scored the fight for Magsayo by 3 rounds as I watching it live.

    • Totally agreed. 3 rounds or more in favour of Magsayo. Russell Jr should retire, preparing the youngest brother Gary Antuawn Russell, much better than him in my opinion.

  • Props to Russell jr. showing the heart of a champion. I thought he still won it. Magsayo had no answer to Russels left and couldnt take advantage of a 1-handed Russell. Easy win with both hands.

  • Russell will forever regret his lack of commitment in boxing. He has good skills good boxing IQ. What he lacks is how he sell himself and fighting once a year and this time almost two didn’t help at all. He could have fought more and earn more when his name is hot. But he chose to enjoy the little that he have after the Gonzales fight he didn’t aspire fore more $$$

  • Scoring was an outrage. Magsayo won virtually every round, this fight was not close at all. The judge who scored it even should be horsewhipped.

    • Agree. Not even close. Russell did absolutely nothing. He probably stunk out a couple of rounds, but he sure didn’t earn any.

  • Russell is the type that will blame everybody for his loss. His style is not attractive, so without a belt, the big money fights will no longer be there for him. Too much time spent talking and blowing his own trumpet instead of fighting.

    • luck?! did you see what is the outcome of the fight? katangahan mo wag pinagkakalat sa socmed nakakahiya

  • Oh well…Gary start planning for your next fight in 12months to become mandatory hopefully in 2027

  • Even before Russell’s injury he lost 3 of the first 4 rounds. These judges must of thought they were watching a dance contest!

  • The idiot who scored the draw needs to take the bribe and have a very long holiday.

  • THANK YOU MARK MAGSAYO! Thank you so much for ridding us of the 126-pound obstructionist and supreme poser. Hopefully you will want to unify with the other Champions at 126, and unlike the former champion I’m sure you will.

  • I am far from impressed with Magsayo’s performance. He should have performed much better against a shorter onearmed boxer without his jab over so many rounds.

    I agree what is said about Russell Jr’s inactivity. Since 2015 he has been up in the ring only once a year. Not even that since 2020. The reason? Don’t know. Cov-19 might have been a factor lately but it doesn’t explain the years before that.

    I would have loved to watch Russell Jr at least twice a year. To me Russell Jr has always been entertaining. Love his style and speed.

    But I think that Russell Jr. did the best he could in this fight from his injury. What else could he do?

    Sometimes you loose due to injury, which must be a horrible feeling, but as in this case, loosing to a boxer that didn’t performe better sucks.

    • He really should have tried to take him out when realizing he was fighting one handed fighter. Almost didn’t do enough to keep corrupt judges from gifting Russell-even though one did anyway with the draw.

  • If one is using logic, rather than emotion; it is plain to see that Russell was injured early and probably needed a few rounds to warm up due to inactivity and Magsayo was the benefactor of this circumstance. Congrats to the Filipino. Hopefully, Russell’s injury heals up quickly, and a rematch will take place sooner rather than later, so the universe can determine who the superior fighter is. If Magsayo wins the rematch fair and square, then we know this was no fluke. Don’t let these comments on this forum bring you down Gary, some of these commentators are hating because they can’t do what you do and have accomplished as an amateur and a pro. Your goal should be to get the rematch, win the title back, get a big fight for some decent bread, retire with your faculties, and train your younger brothers.

  • Gary will always be our Champion here in D.C.. he has the same determination and energy as Bernard Hopkins,he fought with one arm the reason he fought is all his money is being used for his father’s medical coverage and fighting once or twice a year he needed the money. He is amazing

    • It is too bad about his father, but the reason he fought at all is because he had to. The Filipino fighter was his mandatory, but that was a nice heartfelt story in your post:-)

    • Sorry don’t buy it. He’s not paying for his fathers medical treatment, he never said that and if he did he’d be lying.

  • These judges nearly ruined another fight. I had it 118-110. I know he got hurt early in the fight but even before that he wasn’t able to get much going even with the jab. No excuse to have 8 fights in nine years.

  • age inactivity can cause injury in this sport of boxing he should take care of his shoulder and retire russell was in pain in the 4th round he fought with one hand at least he didnt quit he finished the fight it was a close decision do not want to see a rematch

  • So did Russel hurt is rt. shoulder during the fight or did he hurt it in training? Magsayo threw more power shots and was more active then Russel. If he hurt his arm he fought like he didn’t hurt it. I never heard of Magsayo, what hurt Russel was not being an active fighter all these years.

    • I read an article a day or two before the fight where he said he had “a little slight injury” going into it but wasn’t planning to reveal what it was until after the fight.

  • – Outstanding card @The Borgata in AC, NJ.
    – First live fights that I have been to in a very long time.
    – Felt good to hear Jimmy Lennon, Jr, say “Live from the Borgata Hotel and Spa in Atlantic City, New Jersey, it’s SHOWTIME !!!!!!!”

  • Looked like the same boring Russell as usual. Peck a few arm punches and move backwards. See ya in 2025.

  • Magsayo’s strategy to stand back, jab and counter Russell everytime he threw was working well in the first two rounds. After Russell hurt his shoulder in the 3rd, Magsayo negated all his physical advantages and began charging in without using his jab and getting potshot occasionally.

    Russell didn’t do enough to win the fight. He basically moved and avoided a lot of punches but didn’t make Magsayo pay for missing. Masagyo cooperated beautifully by forgetting about his game plan and did the lunging instead of waiting for Russell to do it.

    That said, I gave Magsayo 8 of the rounds winning 116-112. I thought he was doing well with his initial strategy but was disappointed that he forgot about his jab and started charging in recklessly. Russell was in survival mode and Magsayo didn’t dominate the fight as he should have. That’s on him.

    A rematch may be in order but Russell is just getting older and seems to be fighting some injury or other. His inactivity is really not good for the sport. I believe it’s time he just packed it in. I expect Magsayo to be a lot more active and will not keep the title on mothballs for a couple of years or more.

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