By: Sean Crose
He doesn’t fight much – around once a year at most – but WBC featherweight titlist Gary Russle Jr will be returning to the ring on January 22nd. He’ll be heading a live Showtime triple header from Atlantic City’s Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa. The 31-1 Russell Jr will fighting for the first time since 2020 and for the seventh time in seven years. His opponent in the scheduled twelve round affair will be the 23-0 Mark Magsayo. The card will be promoted by TGB Promotions.
“I’m ready and I’ve been waiting to display my talents and get back in the ring,” Russell says. “My opponent is one of Manny Pacquiao’s fighters, who is a legend in the sport and I’m pretty sure has a good eye for talent. I’m sure he signed Magsayo for a reason. I know that I’m facing a guy who’s willing to put it all on the line, with everything to gain and nothing to lose.”
It’s worth noting that Russell is an extremely skilled titlist, one who has recently offered to go up in weight to face Terence Crawford. Russell’s latest win was a points victory over the previously undefeated Tugstsogt Nyambayar. He may not fight often, but Russell is definitely worth seeing when he does.
“Gary Russell Jr. has been a force in the featherweight division for years with his dazzling skills and will again defend his title against a hungry and powerful up-and-coming opponent when he duels Mark Magsayo live on SHOWTIME on Saturday, January 22,” says TGB’s Tom Brown. “Magsayo earned this fight with an impressive 10th-round knockout of Julio Ceja in August and he will be looking to show that he’s the future of the 126-pound division, by knocking off the long-reigning featherweight king in Russell, who has proven worthy of his top spot with his five successful title defenses. Combined with two all-action undercard showdowns, this shapes up to be an electric night of boxing in Atlantic City.”
Needless to say, Magsayo is thrilled with the opportunity he’s been given. “I am very grateful for this opportunity to fight on Showtime for the WBC world title,” he says. “This is the fight that I want and have been working hard to get for years. I am going to come to win and to make the most of this chance. There is a reason Gary is a champion, just like there is a reason I became the mandatory challenger. This is going to be a great fight for me to show the world what Filipinos are made of. I’ve had a long road to get to this position and I will be fighting in honor of everyone who helped me get here.”
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