By Steve Kim Updated on November 27, 2023

Bustin' Pipes

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They say that pressure busts pipes. Well, it sure busted Demetrius Andrade and Shohjahon Ergashev this past weekend at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas. They both tried their best but quickly succumbed to the unrelenting pressure put on them by David Benavidez and Subriel Matias.

Neither got off the stool after six punishing rounds.

They each had the fight beaten out of them by guys who don't just beat you, they beat you into submission. 

Picture for Bustin' PipesAmanda Westcott/Showtime Sports

In the nights main event, Andrade had some early success using his southpaw style and movement. 'Boo Boo' landed a few quick, flashy combinations. The problem was that these punches didn't dissuade the oncoming charge of Benavidez(28-0, 24 KOs), who quickly got going in round three. And the unfortunate reality for Andrade, a two-division belt-holder, is that he was facing a fighter who will one day be a formidable light heavyweight, while he himself is a natural junior middleweight.

Benavidez isn't just heavy handed, but he's also a concussive volume puncher. And once he starts coming downhill on an opponent, it's like trying to slow an avalanche. Eventually, he will surround and swarm you with a deluge of leather. 

Andrade(32-1, 19 KOs) was sent down by a sweeping right hand in the fourth, then softened up a bit more in the fifth, and then knocked around badly at the end of the sixth. Eventually, the prudent decision was made to call off the fight by his corner. It was the correct one because things were only going to get worse from that point on. 

Picture for Bustin' PipesAmanda Westcott/Showtime Sports

"I think I just solidified myself as a dominant force here,” said Benavídez, who made it very clear who he wants to face in the near future. “I just reminded everyone who the real champion at 168 is. Who wants to see me versus Canelo? I'm going to be super middleweight champion of the world, three-time world champion. Now, just give me the fight that we all want to see. Who wants to see Benavídez versus Canelo?”

Just about every boxing fan without a dishonest agenda would like to see that pairing in 2024. The question is: does Alvarez really need that at that stage of his life and career?

Benavidez isn't technically a world champion at 168 (he is rated number one by Ring Magazine, with Alvarez the champion), but it's clear he is now a fan favorite with his all-action style. It's why luminaries such as Mike Tyson have tabbed him 'the Mexican Monster'. An admiring Tyson was ringside and congratulated him for his latest conquest.

Picture for Bustin' PipesAmanda Westcott/Showtime Sports

"I just told Mike Tyson that I love him and thank you so much for the motivation he's given me,” Benavídez said. “It's not every day a boxing legend like Mike Tyson gives people nicknames, so I just want to live up to my name.

The 2023 campaign for Benavidez saw him collect the scalps of Caleb Plant and now Andrade, two technically sound, slick boxers who were eventually put in the blender. What was thought to be a bout that would provide him some difficulty this past weekend was turned into a one-sided destruction. Overcoming Benavidez is easier said than done.

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Amanda Westcott/Showtime Sports

“Everybody says I'm not this, I'm not that, I'm flat-footed, I have no defense," stated Benavidez. "This guy probably applied one of the best defenses. He's really good offensively. He could barely even hit me, so I think that says a lot on its own. I just have to keep beating who they put in front of me. I'm the best. I'm going to be the best. I'm going to be a legend by the time I'm done, so whoever you keep putting in front of me, I'll keep knocking them down."

Earlier on this card, Matias defended his IBF junior welterweight crown versus highly regarded contender, Ergashev. In round one, Ergashev started out quickly as he unleashed a slew of left hands, one of which seemed to really get the attention of Matias.

But just as quickly as Ergashev gained momentum, it was quickly taken right back by the defending champion. By the end of round two, it was Matias coming forward and letting loose hard shots that backed up Ergashev, who for the first time in his career was really facing oncoming traffic. And quite frankly, he didn't handle it that well. Instead of rising to the challenge, he shrunk from it. 

Picture for Bustin' PipesAmanda Westcott/Showtime Sports

“When I started feeling [Ergashev's] punches in the first round, I knew he didn't have the power to knock me out. That's when I started attacking,” Matías said.

By round four, Ergashev(23-1, 20 KOs) was taking quite the shellacking. He was no longer on the offensive, but solely on the defensive as he was getting slowly walked down, his will to fight evaporating quickly. After round six, the fight was waved off as Ergashev complained of an injury to his lower body.

I felt a pain and wasn’t able to move,” he explained. “I just couldn’t move around the ring in the last two rounds. Once I got hurt, I wasn’t able to display any offense, and I couldn’t use my defense because once my legs gave out on me, I couldn’t stick to the game plan. I wasn’t able to move around the ring and use angles like I did in the first two rounds.

As for Matias (20-1, 20 KOs), while he is ranked fourth by Ring Magazine, you could make the argument that he is the one guy in the division that nobody wants to face -- even with a title belt around his waist. He doesn't just beat you, he beats you up. You wonder if any of the marquee names at 140 ever risk it versus this guy. He's not a difficult guy to find in there, but it's just nearly impossible to keep him away.

Picture for Bustin' PipesAmanda Westcott/Showtime Sports

"Teofimo Lopez, Gervonta Davis, Devin Haney, if you want that, come over here and fight,'' stated Matias. 

Both Benavidez and Matias have become must-see TV for fight fans. The question is, who will be willing to face them in the future?



The Showtime replay of Benavidez-Andrade will take place on Saturday (11 pm, ET/PT)....Lamont Roach captured the WBA junior lightweight title by scoring a split decision over Hector Luis Garcia...Michel Rivera defeated Sergey Lipinets over 10 rounds on this undercard....Jermall Charlo made his return to the ring and out-pointed Jose Benavidez in a 10 rounder....Can you believe how Auburn blew that game versus 'Bama?...Is Jayden Daniels the new Heisman Trophy front runner?...I can be reached at










About Author
Bustin' Pipes
  • Hosted 'the Main Event' on KIEV 870, and then later XTRA AM1150 ( a three hour show devoted to boxing) from 1996 to 1999.
  • Joined one of the first boxing websites, 'House of Boxing' in 1999, and then later became one of the founders of Maxboxing, that started in 2001, till his departure in 2014.
  • From 2014 to 2018, he was the lead columnist for
  • Was a boxing reporter for from 2018 to 2020.
  • He has written for Ring Magazine, International Boxing Digest and Boxing News.
  • Is the co-host of 'the 3 Knockdown Rule' with Mario Lopez, which has become of the most popular boxing podcasts the past several years.
  • Steve has also served as an announcer and analyst for RingTV, Thompson Boxing, 360 Promotions and CBS Sports Network.