Abel Sanchez: Gassiev Won't Wait, Will Start Faster With Usyk

By Steve Kim

When Murat Gassiev faces Oleksandr Usyk on May 11th in the finals of the World Boxing Super Series cruiserweight tournament, he won't be nearly as patient as he was this past weekend against Yunier Dorticos, when he boxed strategically in the early stages and then came on in the middle rounds to eventually stop the Cuban in the 12th and final round.

In the first round of the tournament, Gassiev (26-0, 19 KOs) knocked out former world champion Krzysztof Wlodarczyk in the third round.

Gassiev's trainer, Abel Sanchez explained toe - "against Usyk we're not going to be allowed to let him get too far ahead because this is a guy who is very talented, gold medalist, and he's a different type of fighter than Dorticos. We're not going to fear so much the power - or be aware of it, I should say - he can go on like a machine for 12 rounds, throwing pitty-pat punches and just keep you out of your game plan and keep you away from doing any damage."


Usyk pulled off a tenth round stoppage over former champion Marco Huck in the first round of the tournament, and won a close and very competitive twelve round majority decision over Mairis Briedis to reach the finals.

All four of the major sanctioning titles - the WBO, IBF, WBA, WBC - will be at stake in the contest. 

While Dorticos was a right-handed power puncher, Usyk (14-0, 11 KOs) is an agile southpaw, who throws a high volume of leather, who overwhelms his opponents with activity.

"So we have to make sure we don't allow him to get on a roll," said Sanchez.

As for when Gassiev will return to Big Bear to prepare for this fight, Sanchez told - "He's got a plan ticket for the 5th of March, right now."

Steve Kim is the news editor for

User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by Shontae De'marc on 02-08-2018

Whatever the case may be, Usyk cannot afford a slow start this fight

Comment by BLASTER1 on 02-07-2018

What a fight this will be. Cant wait!!!! Go Gassiev.

Comment by Squ□redCircle34 on 02-07-2018

Iron vs Rubix Gassive can win due to constant pressure and relentless shots especially to the body! Winning rounds and gaining a huge lead on the scorecard to make Usyk come forward late due to being behind and more chances…

Comment by Johnston on 02-07-2018

It was smart, Dorticos was following him around throwing hard shots and by round 4 or 5 he slowed down. I thought that was a smart plan. But you don't need to worry about usyk doing that, their gonna have…

Comment by OctoberRed on 02-07-2018

That was my concern with the last fight, that he would start too slow.

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