In the main event of a show at the Pennsylvania Sheet Metal Workers Hall in Philadelphia on Friday night, Derrick “Take it to the Bank” Webster (17-0, 8 KOs) used a methodical approach over six rounds to cruise to a unanimous decision victory over the gritty Michael Gbenga (19-14, 19 KOs). Webster had to deal with some adversity to achieve the win, suffering the first cut of his career after repeated headbutts from his Ghanaian opposition, but final scores of 59-55 (twice) and 58-56 officially added another victory to his perfect professional resume.
“He was an awkward guy, pretty tough,” Webster said of Gbenga. “A lot of headbutts, but I knew going into the fight that he could get a little dirty. I had him frustrated in the fight. I actually had him hurt a couple of times, but I lost my vision in my left eye due to a headbutt. But I did what I needed to do to get through the rounds and proceed to get the win.”
Webster used the opening round of this bout to figure out what type of strategy that Gbenga would be presenting to him, and he used that in-action research throughout the remainder of the fight. In the second frame, he began to stab more frequently with the jab, repeatedly finding his way through the guard of his opponent and snapping his head back with crisp shots.
The third round saw Webster begin to open up more, as the southpaw began to follow up the jab with more straight left hands. He was looking very comfortable in the ring, using solid defense and body movement to continually avoid the wildly awkward angles that Gbenga used on his punches. Midway through the frame, Webster unloaded a nice flurry that set the stage for the second half of the bout.
Webster was in complete control over the final three rounds of this contest, perfectly reading his opposition when he threw punches and immediately countering with hard left hands before Gbenga was able to get his hands back to protect himself. In the closing seconds of the fourth frame came the headbutt that opened up the left brow of Webster, which seemed to only ignite the Glassboro native. As soon as the bell started the fifth round, he came charging forward and unloaded a multi-punch combination that put Gbenga on his heels, then using slick head and body movement to completely frustrate his opponent because he was unable to land any shots.
In the final round, Webster turned up the tempo as he looked to get rid of his Ghanaian counterpart, but he was unable to find much room to work as Gbenga continually lunged forward head-first before jumping into the clinch.
When all was eventualy said and done, the ringside judges all saw it in favor of Webster, who elevated his perfect professional record to 17-0 with the win.
“17-0 without a promoter,” stated Webster, who is still a free agent for some mind boggling reason. “I’m blessed, and I climbed my way here. Nobody gave it to me.”
The cut Webster endured from the Gbenga headbutts will sideline him for at least a month due to Boxing Commission regulations, but Webster only had the immediate future on his mind as he was leaving the venue on Friday night.
“I’m out,” he stated. “I have some cupcakes at home waiting on me.”