After Mikey Garcia, at 135 pounds, defeated Robert Easter last summer, he stated “I am here for the biggest challenges…. I Think that’s (Spence vs Garcia) the next big fight coming up,” calling out Errol Spence Jr.
Mikey’s a sound boxer at 135, but when I first heard that Mikey wanted to fight Spence, it sounded like a joke full of hot air. The idea of Spence even considering taking a fight with Mikey seemed unrealistic. But even once there were serious talks between their camps to make it happen, its sensibility as being a competitive fight never latched on to me, but it took hold of the boxing community.
Most fans would’ve rather seen Spence fight Keith Thurman, Shaw Porter, Terrence Crawford, or one of the other top welter weight contenders, but for different reasons, those fighters were too busy with other important things than to fight Spence, the Boogieman. Eventually for Spence, Mikey who’s a unified champion, though he is normally fighting in two weight divisions below Spence, became an attractive opponent to settle for. Since the announcement of this fight, Mikey has been transformed to be perceived as the heroic David challenging Goliath, and he has swayed the boxing world into buying the idea that it would be a competitive fight of the best fighting the best. But in reality, Mikey is not only going to need a miracle to defeat Spence, but he is going to need a miracle to not be stopped before round 8.
Robert Garcia, Mikey’s brother and trainer, claims that last February he and Mikey were watching the fight between Errol Spence and Lamont Peterson, who Spence easily defeated, and Mikey said that he saw “something” in Spence that he could exploit. Robert also has stated that he thought Mikey was crazy for wanting that fight. However, the fight is now set for tomorrow, and now Robert Garcia and many others such as former boxing champions Roberto Duran, Sugar Ray Leonard, Mike Tyson and many fans have been swayed in believing that Mikey has the skills to possibly beat Spence.
I don’t believe Mikey is crazy at all for taking the fight, but I do think the boxing world is crazy for being swindled into believing that he stands a chance against Spence who walks around over twenty pounds heavier than Mikey, and who is said to have bullied heavy weights and even Floyd Mayweather Jr during sparring. It’s definitely a smart move that makes a lot of ‘cents’ for Spence and Garcia, but I don’t buy the reasoning that Mikey wanted the fight because he saw a flaw in Spence during his bout against Peterson. First, Spence performed surgery on Peterson and there was no noticeable deficiency in Spence’s performance. Secondly, it would have been more logical if Mikey said that he saw a weakness in Spence following his fight with Kell Brook, who outboxed Spence in many rounds during the first half of their fight.
Mikey also has stated that there was no other top contender in his division to fight that would’ve been available this year and that he didn’t want to wait around. Simply, not true. There are other top contenders that Mikey could’ve fought if that was what he wanted, but fighting Spence delays any chance that Mikey would have to fight any top contender at 135 within the next year. And one of those top contenders, Vasyl Lomachenko, will possibly soon retire without having a chance to Fight Mikey. What Mikey really saw is that he desires to build a pseudo legacy and overcome mediocre paydays, and Spence was the perfect pawn to accomplish this.
If Mikey had fought and lost badly to, let’s say, Vasyl NoMasChenko this year, his legacy would’ve been tarnished without being nearly as profitable as a fight with Spence; and yes, Lomachenko did say that he needed a tune-up before Mikey. Lamachenko fought that tune-up fight last year on December 8, 2018. On the other hand, by fighting Spence, Mikey will earn his biggest payday and after he loses badly to Spence, his legacy will still shine with everyone saying how brave he was to step up to Spence. And if Mikey can last until the later rounds, it will be equated with a win. On Mikey’s behalf, this fight will be the greatest swindle in boxing history, and it is comparable to the Mayweather vs Mcgregor fight by the fact that the true boxing world has bought into it.
Knowing better, and in hindsight, many in the boxing world will retort that “at least Mikey was so courageous to step up and call out Spence and then following through with it”. And Mikey Garcia will proudly smile all the way to the bank about his brutal defeat by Spence, knowing that there was nothing brave about soliciting a fight that would make him a lot richer and make him to be perceived as a corageous warrior for making it happen.
Like Mayweather vs Mcgregor, this is a publicity stunt in which both fighters know that this will be a one sided fight. Mikey and his camp, along with Spence and his camp, have been so good at promoting this fight as competitive that it has even jolted Spence into clear frustration with the idea that so many people actually believe Mikey has a chance, which can be seen on Spence’s face during their last press conference. Spence minced his words while trying to boost the fans expectations for this fight, just to then, out of frustration, say that it will be a massacre within the same statement. Though this fight has gotten the hype that Spence desired, because Spence is fairly new to a stage this big, he is somewhat breaking down from the success of this hype campaign which promotes Mikey as a real threat to his belt. The fact that some fans and professionals of the sport are predicting an upset, that is even more reason why Spence will show up and undeniably destroy Mikey tomorrow in order to prove the hype wrong, March 16, 2019.
by, S Cooper