Sunday, July 14, 2024  |



Andrew Cancio pulls off major upset in Indio, knocks out Alberto Machado in 4 rounds

Cancio puts it on Machado. Photo by Lina Baker / @SeeYouRingside
Fighters Network

INDIO, Calif. – Andrew Cancio was done with boxing after his knockout loss to Joseph ‘JoJo’ Diaz in September of 2016.

After taking some time off and moving to one of the hotbeds in all of boxing, Cancio has finally arrived.

Cancio survived an opening round knockdown to stop Alberto Machado in the fourth round before a sold-out and partisan crowd at the Fantasy Springs Resort Casino.

With the win, Cancio pulled off a significant upset of one of the top junior lightweights in boxing while picking up a minor WBA “regular” belt. He also gets a day off from his day job at Southern California Gas Company, where he will report to work on Tuesday.

Cancio moved from his hometown of Blythe, less than 100 miles from Indio, to Oxnard in a final attempt to revitalize his career. He began training at Knuckleheadz Gym in neighboring Ventura, where he is trained by Joseph “Hoss” Janik.

Machado (21-1, 17 knockouts) was coming off a first round knockout victory over Yuandale Evans on Oct. 27 and was the heavy betting favorite Saturday night.

After moving up in weight to 130 pounds and notching two victories in 2018, Cancio accepted the Machado fight, even though few outside his team gave him any chance to win.

“If I didn’t think I could win, I wouldn’t have accepted the fight,” Cancio told RingTV earlier this week.

Cancio was off to a rocky start during the opening round, when a left uppercut from the taller Machado dropped Cancio to the canvas. Cancio was able to gather himself and get up to finish the round.

The knockdown seemed to wake him up as he closed the distance, letting his hands go and connecting with several combinations to the head and body.

Cancio continued being the aggressor in round three, outboxing and outlanding Machado, who looked overwhelmed as the bout continued.

The 30-year-old Cancio seemed to feed off the crowd, and he did not disappoint in the fourth round. A left hook to the body dropped Machado to the canvas. Machado beat the count, but was dropped again by another left hook to the body.

Machado stood up on shaky legs, where Cancio threw and landed a barrage of punches, where Machado slumped to the canvas against the ropes. Referee Raul Caiz, Jr. stopped the bout at 2:16.

“This was the fight of my life,” said an emotional Cancio after the fight. “I feel extremely great winning by knockout. I did not want to let this fight go to the judges’ scorecards. I was never out of the fight (after the knockdown). It’s been a long road and it felt like we thought it would: unbelievable.”

Cancio improves to 20-4-2, 15 KOs.

Machado was diplomatic in defeat.

“I felt weak in there. The rematch would be nice, but I think I have to move up to 135 pounds. We will see.”


Francisco A. Salazar has written for since October of 2013 and has covered boxing in Southern California and abroad since 2000. Francisco also covers boxing for the Ventura County (Calif.) Star newspaper,, and He can be reached by email at [email protected] or on Twitter at @FSalazarBoxing.