Gary Russell took on Roberto Castaneda, in a featherweight scrap, in the ShoBox main event at Fantasy Springs Casino in Indio, CA on Friday night. Possessor of some of the very fastest hands in the game, Russell showed them off, in particular his right, in the third. A right hook, which landed on the chin, after coming from outside his peripheral vision, sent Castaneda down and paralyzed him. The ref knew it, and didn’t need to count. The ending came at 1:25, for the record.
All I think can agree that Russell is a solid prospect, who we are eager to see take on a heralded foe. Ideas, readers?
Russell (20-0 entering; living in Maryland; age 24) was 126.8 pounds, while Castaneda (21; 20-2 entering; from Mexico) was 125. In the first, the lefty Russell popped that blinding jab, and ripped combos. He never threw single shots, preferring to put together his punches in bunches. Papa Russ in the corner told his kid to go to the body in the third. Castaneda ate a screaming right hand which crumpled him to end it.
Terrell Gausha fought Dustin Caplinger in a super middle tangle. Cappy went down with 35 seconds to go, and did well to exit the round. In the second, he went down again. And again...and the doc threw in the towel. The winner could have used a better foe to test him a bit more, if you want to quibble. The end came at 1:55.
Errol Spence took on Jon Garcia in a junior middle tangle. The lefthander Spence showed fast hands. He was flowing and sharp, and Garcia was overmatched, but willing to stick around to earn his pay. He kept his hands slow, inviting Spence to hit him, as if he needed the impetus. Garcia went down in the third, with 35 seconds left. He ate more, and the ref stopped it. Steve Farhood, the analyst, called the winner "composed" and Raul Marquez gave him a thumbs up as well. "This was a good style for him to learn," he said. Barry Tompkins said he "kinda showed the whole package."
Marcus Browne, from Staten Island, met Codale Ford. The New Yorker said he was fighting for those in the region who were hit hard by the severe storm Sandy. The lefty Browne was the more tutored of the two, and it showed. Ford scored a takedown in the second, showing some of his MMA skills. Browne’s body work affected Ford. He went down in the third, after trainer Gary Stark Sr. told Browne to get nastier. A left hand to the body did the damage. The ref halted the affair as Browne ripped nasty. Two rights to the body had the ref diving in to save the loser. The time was 1:04 for the New Yorker, who looked like a pro in there, sharp and focused.
Dominic Breazeale, a heavyweight who played QB in college, took on Curtis Tate. A Toughman type without much seasoning, he went down off a right 40 seconds in. He said he couldn’t see, the ref stopped the fight, then he re-started it. Breazeale knocked him down right away, and the fight was stopped. The time was 1:06. It sounded like the loser said he couldn’t see out of his left eye.
Bantam Rau’Shee Warren, a three-time Olympian, kicked off the TV portion of the show. He met Luis Rivera, and looked to crack from the get go. He both led and countered, and showed nice speed of hand. The Ohioan dominated, and had his man in some trouble in the fourth but couldn’t cap the night with a KO. In fact, he was knocked down, with a minute left, though he protested that he slipped. He was right, it was a pure balance issue. But Warren still left the building with the W, scoring a UD4.
SPEEDBAG Tompkins and Farhood honored Emanuel Steward, the Hall of Famer trainer-manager-promoter-analyst. We saw a package featuring an Al Bernstein on voiceover as well. "Manny will perhaps be best remembered as boxing’s best ambassador," he said. Amen.
Lmao Iil guy couldn't knock out his bum and slipped. You can get carried away and sloppy when you fight a bag that doesn't hit back. All prospects fight bums but at least it's kept off tv to allow the general public not to catch on so much. Lets see how they do over the years. Step it up or else it will show later when real fights happen
Everybody has to start somewhere... Loved the show, a glimpse of the future... and best of all no long tedious fights.
Rashee Warren, might win somebodies abc title... He reminds of Hilmer Kenty,.. quick jab and hook, but somewhat fraile looking.
Brezeale, big and strong but still coated in inexperience and baby fat (makes WK look like a golden age fighter)... How I long for the days when heavyweights had fluid coordination, athleticizm and were able to use a full arsenal of punches with good technique...(like a prime HolyField).
Although time is deffnitely on Brezeales side.
And on the plus side he's another addition to the "Giant" heavyweight class.
Spence.. One of the best of the lot.. needs seasoning, but the kid is bursting with talent and potential.
Gashua and Browne looked strong, but it's too early to tell how they would perform against better opposition.
Russell,... never looked better,.. the most scintillating KO I've seen since Javier Fortuna KO'd Christobal Cruz with a single right hand counterpunch (while moving backwards, Google it) that sounded like a shotgun blast. Scary.
Russell's been moved very slow and carefull and it seems to have paid off, not as wild and wide open as before,.. The knock on Russell is, Fans are ready for him to step it up.
Overall some very tasty Hors d'œuvres before tonights fights.
I found this card very tough to watch. I watched the first three then fast forwarded to the main event. I know they're not going to match the Olympians with good fighters but that was way too soft. Looking forward to some real fights tonight!
I'm 100 percent with the Roast. These former O-Game fighters are weak as syet. Go holla into the histories of legit Yank prospects coming outta da O-Games. Their debuts were made against live bodies. OMG! One cat came outta da O-Games back in the day, and knocked down the heavyweight champ of the world. Other prospects have come outta the O-Games and fought top contenders until they would win title belts in 18 months to four years. And WTF! These nowadays O-Game prospects have five major alphabet sanctioning organizations to shoot for.
Gary Russell is going on five years as a pro and haven't fought a top 40 contender. WTF! I give it up to Russell. He is a mad bullsh*tter with all his histrionics. Holla!
USA gotta stop looking for talent in the usual way. These guys dont cut it anymore! They must recruit in the suburbs, the farmlands, gotta getem young!! Did you ever realize how well conditioned a farmboy is from jump street! These present day representatives are all about razzle dazzle and short on heart! If you tell me American Boxing is dead! Unless they go prospecting in more fertile ground!
Actually geography has a lot "to do with talent" and type of talent. You don't get sprinters out of Kenya, but you get distant runners. You don't get distant runners out of Jamaica, but you get sprinters.
Ohio and the Midwest produces boxers who are largely speed demons. New England produces largely wrecking machines. The West produces quick counter-punching, in-the-pocket types. Philly produces get-down-and-dirty, you-are-in-a-fight boxers.
I could go on forever with examples, but hopefully you cats get my point. Geography -- and the terrain, climate, food and peeps in that geography -- indeed matters. The game is called the sweet science for a reason. And there are a lot of variables. Geography is one of the important elements. Holla!