By Ryan Burton
BoxingScene.com caught up with undefeated featherweight contender Gary Russell Jr. (22-0, 13KOs) shortly after his dominant unanimous decision victory over Vyacheslav Gusev (20-3). Russell injured his hand early early on but was still able to pitch a shutout, winning ever round.
"I'm not sure if its broken. I know that I definitely seriously injured it early in the fight. Maybe the 3rd or 4th round," Russell said in reference to his hand.
"We were able to make certain adjustments in the corner. We worked behind our jab. We knew we were up on points. We used the jab. My father made the adjustments and now we are 22-0," stated Russell.
The Maryland native advised BoxingScene prior to the fight that he wanted to face Juan Manuel Lopez of Puerto Rico in his next fight. He said that his plan hasn't changed and that is still the goal.
"Most definitely (that is still the plan). Like I told you guys we definitely want to get our hands on Juan Manuel Lopez (32-2, 29KOs). We want to fight him and then we want to fight for a title, put our hands on Ponce De Leon," Russell explained.
Russell is promoted by Golden Boy Promotions while Lopez is promoted by rival Top Rank. The two companies are engaged in a bitter feud which makes the fight appear very unlikely to come to fruition. Russell understands the politics fo the sport but is confident the fight can be made.
"My team said they will look to make the fight happen. We want to give boxing a show. A lot of people say that boxing is going down hill, etc. and I think that we will put on a great performance against Lopez and that will put us on the plateau that we want to be," Russell told BoxingScene.com.
Lopez recently said that he can no longer get down to the featherweight weight limit but that he would be willing to go down to a 128 pound catch-weight for the right fights. Russell said that he doesn't have any issues with the fight happening at a catch-weight.
"I would definitely fight him at a catch-weight of 128. That isn't a problem at all," said Russell.
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