Friday, March 24, 2023  |


Eduardo Hernandez survived being shot, now out to make impression on US fans

Eduardo Hernandez (L) scored a KO over Ibrahim Mgender in his first fight on US soil. Photo by Tom Hogan/Golden Boy Promotions

Eduardo ‘Rocky’ Hernandez is not only grateful for the opportunity of fighting under the Golden Boy Promotions banner, but that he is still able to continue as a professional prizefighter.

An attempted carjacking that turned ugly in his hometown of Mexico City almost cut short a promising career. Now that he is at 100 percent and on the cusp of becoming a legit contender, Hernandez is eager to make fans on this side of the U.S.-Mexico border.

Hernandez will make his U.S. and Golden Boy Promotions debut Saturday night when he faces Tanzania’s Ibrahim Mgender at the Fantasy Springs Resort Casino in Indio, California.

The ten-round bout will stream live on DAZN, beginning at 9 p.m. ET/ 6 p.m. PT.

Hernandez (27-0, 24 knockouts) made his pro debut in February of 2014 at 126 pounds, but has gained recognition recently as a strong contender in the junior lightweight division. The 21-year-old Hernandez, who is ranked No. 2 by the WBC, recently cracked The Ring Magazine rankings at No. 10.

In his last bout on Oct. 13, Hernandez stopped Luis Diaz in the Mexico City suburb of Iztacalco. The knockout over Diaz marks Hernandez’s 21st consecutive win by knockout.

Hernandez’s rise to contender status caught the attention of Golden Boy Promotions, who signed him to a co-promotional deal in February. Hernandez is still under contract with Promociones del Pueblo, who has represented him since his pro debut.

Hernandez is grateful for the opportunity he is getting with Golden Boy.

“I have the had the opportunity to have (promoter) Oswaldo Kuchle guide my career since my pro debut,” Hernandez told The Ring Thursday afternoon. “He has done a great job and I’m looking forward to what he and Golden Boy Promotions will do for the next stage of my career. I hope that Saturday night will open the path where I could fight in Las Vegas or New York City, where the biggest fights are staged.”

Saturday night will mark the first time Hernandez will fight outside Mexico, where he has headlined shows on Televisa, one of Mexico’s leading networks.

Hernandez is eager to fight in the U.S., but that almost did not happen after a carjacking almost cost him not only his career, but also his life in January 26 of last year. Hernandez was attacked by two men in an attempt to steal his car, and in the commotion, was shot in the lower back by one of the assailants.

Hernandez was taken to a local hospital, where the bullet was removed. The impressive thing was Hernandez needed little time to recover, as he returned to the ring four months later, stopping former contender Drian Francisco of the Philippines after the second round on May 26.

“It was surreal to go through what I did, but thanks to God, I overcame that incident and moved on. It’s unfortunate how that is Mexico City, but I know there are good people who supported me and were there for me when I got out of the hospital. I didn’t think my career was going to be over. I had excellent doctors that took care of me.”

Golden Boy and Promociones del Pueblo are counting on Hernandez to be a serious contender in a very competitive division, but that will likely take place late this year or in 2020.

For now, Hernandez is expected to take care of business against Mgender (22-5, 10 KOs), who was stopped in his last bout on Dec. 9 against South Africa’s Azinga Fuzile. Hernandez is not making Mgender.

“I know my opponent is not well-known, but those are the types of fights that are dangerous. I’m focused on my task at hand on Saturday. I’m looking to be at my best and not take him lightly.”

Hernandez would like to fight again in the U.S. as soon as possible, but another fight in or around Mexico City could be in the plans for later this year. He has become popular amongst boxing fans in Mexico, but believes his style could be a hit with those on this side of the border as well.

“I’m really looking forward to fighting and building my name in the United States. There are many opportunities that can present themselves if I win on Saturday. My objective is to be the best I can be. I know I have what it takes to become a world champion and to become well-known with boxing fans.”

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