Gary Russell Jr vs Oscar Escandon prediction, breakdown and full preview ahead of the WBC world featherweight title fight.
Gary Russell Jr vs Oscar Escandon Prediction
With his eyes firmly set on a rematch with former foe Vasyl Lomachenko, the highly talented Gary Russell Jr has had to remain extremely patient in waiting for his second WBC Featherweight title defence to take place.
Russell Jr 27-1(16KO’s) will end a year’s hiatus when he boxes tough Columbian Oscar Escandon in Oxon Hill, Maryland.
The home favourite looks set to shake off the ring rust that has mounted with just 2 fights in the past 24+ months.
The shorter Escandon 25-2(17KO’s) seems the perfect fit for that as Russell Jr times his opponent coming in as he slowly takes the wheels off the challengers forays forward.
Escandon’s activity has been no better than Russell Jr’s, and that will prove another decisive factor as the champion takes little time to find his rhythm. Pick: Russell Jr TKO 6
Andre Dirrell looks to position himself up for another shot at the IBF Super Middleweight title when he looks to claim the interim version of the belt against Venezuelan born Jose Uzcategui.
Uzcategui 26-1(22KO’s) is extremely dangerous, but defeat to Matt Korobov in 2014 may have proven where his level is at – although some will point to the fact that the Super Middleweight limit suits his frame far better than him boiling down to Middleweight.
Dirrell 25-2(16KO’s) was dropped last time out against Blake Caparello before winning comfortably, and the same may occur this time, only Uzcategui will make it a far tougher night over 12 rounds. Pick: Dirrell UD
Kiryl Relikh came mighty close to upsetting Ricky Burns last time out, but under the guidance of Ricky Hatton will take on arguably an even tougher challenge with no belt on the line.
Rances Barthelemy proved an avoided fighter in the Lightweight division, and his 5’11” frame certainly had an influence on the two-weight world champion moving up another division to Super Lightweight.
Barthelemy 25-0(13KO’s) will have his hands full with Relikh, but with his style he is often forced to fight on the back foot, attempting to corral his opponents’ onrushes.
Relikh will once again give a great account of himself, but the fast, sharp leather spraying over his guard will be too much to cope with over the 12-round distance.
Relikh has the resilience to hear the final bell, but one crunching right cross could finish the contest late on for the classy Cuban who looks set to make his name at 140lbs. Pick: Barthelemy KO 10