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    Russell admits nursing ‘slight injury’ heading to fight vs Magsayo

    Jan 20, 2022
    Gary Russell Jr.
    Gary Russell insists the injury is nothing he can't handle.
    PHOTO: AP

    REIGNING WBC featherweight champion Gary Russell disclosed he’s nursing a slight injury and won’t be in 100-percent shape for his mandatory title defense against Mark Magsayo on Sunday (Manila time).

    Mark Magsayo opponent nursing injury

    The 33-year-old reigning champion refused to discuss what the injury is, preferring to just reveal it after the 12-round bout at the Borgata Hotel Casino and Spa in Atlantic City, New Jersey.

    “I never go into any of my fights 100 percent, to be honest with you,” Russell said in an interview with DAZN Boxing Show.

    “I do have a little slight (sic) injury, but I prefer to elaborate on it until after the fight.”

    If true, it’s the latest concern the American champion will have to deal with going to his sixth defense of the title he won against Mexican Jhonny Gonzalez in 2015.

    He trained for the Magsayo fight almost by himself, according to Russell, as his father and long-time trainer, Gary Russell Sr., had to deal with a foot amputation due to diabetic complications and couldn’t help him totally prepare for his first outing in almost two years.

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      But like a true champion, Russell (31-1, 18 KOs) is confident he’ll be able to overcome the adversities and retain his belt against the heavy-handed challenger (23-0, 16 KOs) from the Philippines.

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      “We’re going to get through this fight. We’re still going to make things shake, and then we’ll go ahead and put it out there after it’s all said and done,” said the southpaw champion from Washington.

      Russell last fought in February of 2020 in a unanimous decision win against Mongolian Tugstsoqt Nyambayar.

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      Gary Russell insists the injury is nothing he can't handle.
      PHOTO: AP
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