DALLAS—For all of the talent surrounding him, the question isn’t if Ryan Garcia will proceed with fights versus the elite level of the lightweight division but the order in which he can get to all of them.
A significant step was taken in Garcia’s career following his off-the-canvas 7th round knockout of England’s Luke Campbell in their DAZN headliner over the weekend. The WBC interim lightweight title fight proved to be a gut check as advertised for the rising contender, and enough to convince his team that the sky’s the limit.
“Ryan Garcia is obviously ready to face anyone without a doubt,” Oscar de la Hoya, Garcia’s promoter and chairman/CEO of Golden Boy Promotions told BoxingScene.com. “So, I have to sit down with Ryan and his team to figure out what’s next. I want to make the best and the biggest fights possible for Ryan Garcia and for all of his fans. So, we’ll see what’s next.”
Two names emerged immediately in the aftermath of Garcia’s fifth consecutive knockout win. The fight which Victorville, California’s Garcia (21-0, 18KOs) craves the most is a superstar showdown with unbeaten 130-pound champ and secondary lightweight titlist Gervonta Davis (24-0, 23KOs). Both fighters recently headlined shows in Texas with socially distanced fans in attendance.
Roughly 9,000 in the house for Davis’ breakout 6th round knockout of Leo Santa Cruz last Halloween at The Alamodome in San Antonio. Garcia kicked off 2021 in style, with more than 6,000 fans on hand to witness his knockout win over Campbell (20-4, 16KOs) at American Airlines Center in Dallas, Texas.
The chances of such a fight happening next are slim, with a more realistic path existing in a potential title challenge of WBC lightweight titlist Devin Haney (25-0, 15KOs). Saturday’s bout functionally served as a title eliminator, with Haney’s team—including Matchroom Boxing head Eddie Hearn—ready to take the necessary steps to put such a fight in play.
Chances are, it won’t have to come to such drastic measures. As reported by BoxingScene.com, the WBC is prepared to order the title fight which Garcia and his team admittedly don’t view as a first option—though a possible next step, nevertheless.
“We could see (a fight with Haney) happen when that fight is ready,” de la Hoya noted. “Ryan is ready to face everyone in the lightweight division, he just proved that (Saturday night). Those big fights are going to be on our terms, on the terms of Ryan Garcia.
“I don’t mean that in a business way, no. Listen, whenever [Garcia is] ready, he wants these fights. Every champion out there needs Ryan Garcia, not the other way around.”
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox