Bobby Benton recalls O'Shaquie Foster’s ‘movie-like’ 2023

Bobby Benton has been with O’Shaquie Foster for a long time.

Foster looks to make the second defense of his WBC super-featherweight title when he faces Abraham Nova on Friday, February 16, at the Madison Square Garden Theater, in New York City.

Foster’s 2023 was rugged. He entered as the B-side in both of his fights, meaning he was the fighter going in against the promotion’s fighter. He won his world title on a Premier Boxing Champions/Showtime telecast defeating Rey Vargas to win the vacant title. He then returned in late October to stop Eduardo ‘Rocky’ Hernandez. 

Despite many believing the fight was close, the judges had Hernandez well ahead. Foster still won as he took the outcome out of the judges hands by stopping Hernandez in the 12th and final round. 

“Shock’s life is like a movie,” Benton told ProBox TV. “When everyone finds out all the stuff he has been through, when he really opens up and lets everybody know... I mean, beating Rey Vargas… For me, that was a dream. He just showed everybody how good he was.

“Then we go right in with ‘Rocky’ where we are losing on the scorecards, which to me was complete bullshit, but we are down. One judge didn’t even give us one round. Having that talk with ‘Shock’ after, and they gave us open scoring so we knew what the scores were. We are down eight-zero, and then seven-to-one on another one.”

A frustrated Benton recalled talking to the 30-year-old world champion in between rounds. 

“So I told Shock after the eighth round, and he kinda shook his head,” Benton added. “I said, ‘Look, the fight isn’t over.’ We are still here, but you have to change up what you are doing. We got to go get him now.

“He hurt him in the 10th with a body shot. The 11th round was amazing. We had him out. The fight should’ve been over, he turned his back, ‘Rocky’ turned his back. Nobody says anything about that. They completely don’t talk about that.”

Going into the bout many thought Matchroom Boxing had an option on O’Shaquie Foster. Yet, after the fight, it was clear that Foster was a promotional free agent. He fought Hernandez in Mexico, Hernandez’s native country, with many advantages that didn’t go the champions' way, such as a smaller ring.

“It was definitely a small ring, and double padding,” said Benton. “When you step in the ring, you sink about three inches. So you are fighting on memory foam. They did it when Austin Trout fought Canelo. It was almost identical to me. I was going through and having flashbacks. When Trout fought Canelo he got in the ring and he literally sunk. So they knew what they were doing. It was the same exact for Shock. We expected it with Shock more than we did for Trout when he fought Canelo.”

Experience matters in boxing.