Undefeated IBF Welterweight Champion Errol “The Truth” Spence Jr (24-0, 21KOs) will clash with fellow undefeated boxing star Mikey Garcia (39-0, 30KOs) tomorrow night at the AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas. This is a highly anticipated fight for boxing fan from all over. Two pound-for-pound, undefeated champions facing off, for what should be a blockbuster fight.
WBC Lightweight Champion Mikey Garcia, is courageously coming up two weight classes to challenge Spence for what could be determine who the best pound-for-pound fighter is in the world. It is very rare to see a champion of Mikey’s caliber jump up two weight classes and challenge the most dangerous fighter in a heavier division. He is daring to be great and to do something that not many fighters have done in history. Win or lose, we owe him all the respect in the world. Garcia has quite the challenge in front of him.
In his last fight against, then undefeated Robert Easter Jr. (21-1, 14KOs), Garica dominated. He won a clear unanimous decision (116-111, 117-110, 118-109). He won a fight at junior welterweight previously, but his power was not as much of a factor as it was at the lower weight classes, leaving many fans wary of him going to 147. He has opted to challenge on of the most feared boxers on the planet and is doing so without a tune up fight, which is surprising.
“He can’t lose. If he loses to the bigger fighter, then he [is] supposed to lose to him. If he beats the bigger fighter, [then] he shocks the world, so I think it’s a great idea”.
Roy Jones Jr.
Errol “The Truth” Spence Jr. is on an eleven fight KO/TKO/RTD streak. He is coming off a 1st round KO win over then undefeated, Carlos Ocampo (23-1, 14KOs). Spence Jr. has just been an absolute wrecking machine in the welterweight division. He is a vicious body puncher that applies relentless pressure and punishment to his opponent. Some believe that he is the best at 147 right now and is being avoided by the other star fighters in the division. It may appear that way now, but eventually those fights will need to happen.
That is why it is so impressive to see Mikey Garcia to be rising to the occasion like this. Do I like his chances? Simply put, no. Do I think he is rightfully a top pound-for-pound fighter? 100% YES. The guy has been unstoppable. However, in this case, he may be biting off more than he can chew, but that is okay. Like boxing legend, Roy Jones Jr said in a recent interview – “He can’t lose. If he loses to the bigger fighter, then he [is] supposed to lose to him. If he beats the bigger fighter, he shock the world, so I think it’s a great idea”.
You have other fans of Mikey, like Oscar De La Hoya who said, “I’ve never seen a small good man beat a good big man”. It’s super rare to see a guy come up two weight classes against top competition and win. I do expect a good fight, but I am not expecting it to go the full 12 rounds.
Errol Spence Jr keys to victory:
- Relentless pressure. Be physical. Do what he does best, don’t allow Garcia to get into any kind of rhythm. Cut off the ring, bang with him inside. He can’t allow Garcia to box him. He needs to use his size advantage and break the clinches hard.
- Disrupt Garcia’s timing. Bait him. Use hard feints to bait counter punches and use rangy jab to close the distance. Be patient. There’s nothing wrong with closing distance slow. He has given many fighters fits with this technique.
- Throw body punches in bunches. Mikey Garcia has one thing going for him, and that’s his speed. Spence is known for vicious body shots and he shouldn’t shy away from that at all. Punish Garcia to the body, in the 2nd half of the fight and the results will show. Mikey is not used to fighting at 147 so the extra weight may tire him a bit. The body punches will hurt him and force him into deep and dangerous waters the longer the fight goes.
- Utilize the jab early and often. Everyone knows Garcia will try to box the ears off Spence Jr.. Errol needs to utilize his height and reach advantage, and use that jab often. It will allow him to close the distance at will.
“I’ve never seen a small good man beat a good big man”.
Oscar De La Hoya
Mikey Garcia keys to victory:
- Use his superior speed/footwork. He needs to move around constantly. Spence Jr will be cutting off the ring, and doing a lot of things to disrupt Garcia’s rhythm. Move laterally, use feints, and a lot of head movement. He needs to find a way to confuse Spence Jr.
- Stay busy. Time Spence Jr.’s jab and try to counter. When closing the distance, let off quick combinations, step back to the outside and reset. If Spence Jr. backs up during the fight, Garcia must come forward with a flurry of punches. It will disrupt Spence’s rhythm, even if it is only in spots.
- Use the straight right hand. Spence Jr. is a southpaw, and he always throws that vicious left hook to the body. If Garcia can time that, he can utilize that straight right punch right down main street. If he can find a home for it, then he can mix in other punches and hope that it keeps Spence Jr. honest.
Both men are very talented fighters. Mikey Garcia is known more for his boxing ability than Errol Spence Jr, but let that to fool you. Spence Jr. can box as well. The big question here is – Can Garcia hurt Spence Jr? If not, can he at least keep him honest, making Spence Jr. respect his power just enough to create spots where he can establish something? I can’t see him hurting Spence Jr.. Garcia will have to box smart, and take chances in this fight. Taking punishment seems inevitable for Garcia – How well will he absorb it and can he survive 12 rounds are the questions that will be answered tomorrow night.
I don’t believe this fight goes 12 rounds. Spence Jr. comes in and takes care of business, methodically breaking down Mikey Garcia and dishing out a lot of punishment in the process. I could see Robert Garcia throwing in the towel late if it’s an absolute massacre. I could see a controversial split draw if it goes to the scorecards.
My prediction: Errol Spence Jr. by TKO in the mid to late rounds.
This fight will be shown on Premier Boxing Champions on FOX Sports Pay-Per-View (Showtime PPV) on Saturday, March 16 from AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas at 9pm EST. The fight will cost $74.95, and you can stream it live on all devices. No TV provider is required. Fathom Events, Fox Sports and Premier Boxing Champions have teamed up to bring this big fight to the big screen, check this link to see if there is a theater near you showing the fight: https://www.fathomevents.com/events/errol-spence-jr-vs-mikey-garcia/theaters
The PPV card will also feature David Benavidez (20-0, 17KOs) taking on J’Leon Love (24-2-1, 13KOs) in a 10-round showdown; Luis Nery (28-0, 22KOs) facing McJoe Arroyo (18-2, 8KOs) in a 10-round bout and Chris Arreola (37-5-1, 32KOs) facing Jean Pierre Augustin (17-0-1, 12KOs) in a 10 round heavyweight clash. It will be a good night of action.