By Dan Ambrose: Mikey Garcia says the fight between him and Manny Pacquiao hasn’t been finalized yet, but he says the interest is there from the Filipino star’s team for that match-up. Garcia (39-1, 30 KOs) will be fighting later this year against a good opponent to get him ready for a huge fight in early 2020.
Garcia lost his last fight against IBF welterweight champion Errol Spence Jr. in a one-sided decision last March in Arlington, Texas. Pacquiao (62-7-2, 39 KOs) was supposed to fight the winner of that fight, but when Spence’s hand was raised, he appears to have had second thoughts.
Some boxing fans believe that the only guy that Pacquiao ever wanted was Mikey, because he would likely be an easy mark. Mikey was a good fighter in winning world titles at 126, 130, 135 and 140, but he doesn’t belong at 147. Spence toyed with Mikey in beating him last March. It wasn’t even a fair fight.
Mikey Garcia: Team Pacquiao interested in fight
“I am trying to get a fight at the end of the year. It won’t be against Manny [Pacquiao] yet, because he has some obligations with his government,” said Mikey Garcia to Fino Boxing. “So there are rumors out there, but they’re not accurate. We have spoken to their team, and they are interested in a fight with me, but nothing has been finalized.
“I do want to get something before the end of the year, and maybe that’ll help me in the direction of a fight against Manny. I’m thinking I’ll fight before the end of the year, and then next year I’ll look for a big important fight like a fight against Manny Pacquiao. There are no details [about next opponent],” said Mikey.
Pacquiao is supposedly looking to fight the winner of the Spence vs. Shawn Porter fight this weekend. If Pacquiao chooses Mikey instead, he’s going to be heavily bombarded by the boxing public with abuse. Mikey doesn’t deserve another title shot after the way he was battered by Spence. It’s not as if Mikey has redeemed himself since the loss. He hasn’t fought at all since that loss.
Catchweight not needed for Pacquiao fight
“I’m trying to figure that out still,” said Mikey. “The fans want to see me in a good solid fight, and that’s why I’m taking my time to get a good fight that the fans can get excited for. Maybe the first part of next year will be one of those big fights. I wouldn’t pick a catch-weight, because I feel he is naturally smaller in frame and size, so it doesn’t matter,” said Mikey about him not needing a weight handicap against Pacquiao. “If it’s in the contract at 147, he’ll probably come in at 144 or 145, because he’s a naturally smaller guy.
“So I will be coming in as well. I think that’s a more even match-up. That’s naturally a better fit. That’s why I don’t have a concern about a catch-weight or not. The 147-lb limit is just fine with me. He looked great in his last fight [against Keith Thurman] in the 1st round, just throwing punches, and knocking Keith down. He didn’t stop.
That’s something we didn’t see from Manny in several fights. It had been several years since we’ve seen him like that. That was surprising, but at the same time that just shows me that he was motivated. In his other fights, he probably had other obligations to cause him not to be as aggressive. He wanted to make a statement, and look great. That’s the kind of fight that excites me the most,” said Mikey.
Mikey and Pacquiao about the same size
Mikey, 5’7″, is taller than the 5’6 1/2″ Pacquiao, but he’s slower, and lacks the combination punching that the Filipino star has going for him. There’s not much difference in power between the two. What makes Pacquiao so much better than Garcia is the way he explodes with combinations. You can also argue that Manny is more courageous than Mikey, because he would have never moved away from the lightweight division without facing Vasiliy Lomachenko. A lot of boxing fans think Mikey ducked Lomachenko.
Spence beats Porter – says Mikey Garcia
“I think it’s going to be a better fight than many boxing fans expect,” said Mikey about the Errol Spence Jr. vs. Shawn Porter fight. “A lot of people are counting out Porter, saying he has very little chance, but I actually think he does have a chance, and he will put up a better fight than many people expect. If he fights like he usually does, a lot of pressure, stays low, smothers his opponents.
“If he can do that, it’ll be a much better fight, and a more interesting fight. I still feel that Errol Spence’s boxing skills, height and reach will help him win. I don’t think he’s going to hurt Shawn. It’s going to go 12 rounds. Shawn is strong and very resilient guy. I think it goes 12 rounds. I think Spence wins in a competitive fight,” said Garcia.
Spence-Porter may prove to be a more one-sided affair than what Mikey thinks. Spence is expected to mop the deck with Porter on Saturday.
Mikey Garcia picks Canelo to stop Kovalev
“I think Canelo is choosing the right fight to enhance his legacy,” said Mikey about Saul Canelo Alvarez challenging WBO light heavyweight champion Sergey Kovalev. “Moving up in weight is always a challenge. I think Kovalev has had his better days, and that’s why they’ve decided to jump on it now. It’s the perfect match-up, and strategy. I think Canelo knocks out Kovalev.
“A lot of people think the size will be that much of a difference, and be too big for Canelo. But seeing Canelo improve in his last few fights, and seeing Kovalev aging and starting to get hurt easier, I think it’s the perfect time for Canelo to take advantage of that. Moving up in weight to light heavyweight against Kovalev, who just won his last fight, a solid champion, would be a terrific victory on Canelo’s resume. So I think Canelo is choosing the perfect fight. I think he stops him, and wins by knockout,” said Mikey.
In a weak move, Saul Canelo Alvarez cherry-picked an old timer in 36-year-old WBO light heavyweight champion Sergey Kovalev in going after his belt at 175. Canelo could have picked light heavyweight champions Artur Beterbiev, Oleksandr Gvozdyk or Dmitry Bivol.
Mikey predicts Andy Ruiz Jr. beats Anthony Joshua again
“A little bit different, but Andy Ruiz still wins,” said Mikey in predicting a win for Ruiz Jr. over Joshua in rematch. “Anthony Joshua will fight a little bit better, smarter, and try to box. But as soon as things get heated, he’s the type of fighter that gets excited, and leaves himself vulnerable. Just like in previous fights, he gets excited, and has been dropped and hurt a couple of times, and that’s what happened in the first fight.
“He [Joshua] dropped Andy, and he thought that was it, and jumped on him. But he left himself vulnerable, and that was what Andy was able to counter, and hurt him. The same thing will happen in the second fight where Andy is fighting smart, but Anthony still hurts him. He might even stop him in the later rounds like the 10th or 11th rounds. I think it’ll to the distance, but Andy will still stop him,” said Garcia.
This is another toss-up fight. Andy Ruiz Jr. has a chance of beating Anthony Joshua in their December 7 rematch, but we could see some controversy if it goes to the scorecards.