Spence vs. Garcia Has No Fight Hype, Just Goals

The mood is different for Spence vs. Garcia.

Its not the eerie lack of in person event week energy from the COVID-19 reality.

No, it’s the real life missions of both competitors who have something remarkable to prove on Saturday night.

Sleeping on Swift

For the challenger, Danny “Swift” Garcia (36-2), it is a question that has followed him his whole career.

Is he good enough?

Clearly, as a former two-division world champion, he has more than  proven he deserves to be on the biggest stages.

But as this is his first pay-per-view, it underscores a theme among the elite fighters in the welterweight division, Danny Garcia is the most overlooked.

I’m not worried about being the underdog. I know that I’m a great champion and a great fighter. That’s why I’m here today.

“This is a big stage, but I’ve been here before. I’ve been headlining fights on the championship level for eight years. I’ve always been a top level fighter.“

-Danny Garcia, pre-fight press conference

After dominating the light welterweight ranks, Garcia entered the 147lb division during the era of Mayweather making it the “Moneyweight” division.

Although he never got a shot at “TBE”, Garcia faced criticisms from elite champions like Keith “One Time” Thurman who labeled him a cherry picker.

Garcia’s resume holds knockout wins over Amir Khan, Erik Morales, and Paulie Malignaggi but it didn’t stop the mouth of the south from berating Garcia.

When they finally met on SHOWTIME on March 4th, 2017, Thurman slipped by with a close split decision quelling some of the cherry-picker debate.

Still, as Errol Spence began a crusade of domination alongside Terence Crawford, Garcia’s career popularity began to wane a la Roy Jones’ classic record, “Y’all Musta Forgot”.

We’ve been on pay-per-view before, it wasn’t our card, but to us it was. Nothing is going to phase Danny heading into this fight. It doesn’t matter what anyone on the outside is saying.
“Danny doesn’t just know how to win. He knows how to kick your ass.”
-Angel Garcia, Father & Trainer
This Saturday on pay-per-view at AT&T Stadium in Dallas, Texas, Garcia is fighting for people to remember who he is in a crowded welterweight landscape that has never seemed to appreciate his level of violent brilliance.

The Moment of Truth

 

Errol Spence, Jr. has been regarded by many as the future of not only the welterweight division devoid of Mayweather’s dominance, but the entire sport of boxing.

The quietly confident pugilistic tactician from DeSoto, Texas was derailed temporarily after a horrific crash in his Ferrari 488 Spider.

 The IBF and WBC welterweight champ had been drinking and now his in-ring impeccable judgment looked faulty out of competition.

 

I’m going to prove that I’m still the same Errol Spence Jr. I know that people have a lot of questions. Those questions need to be answered. I don’t think I would have answered them against lighter competition. People who haven’t been in the gym are going to see those answers on Saturday.
“This fight is ending with me winning. Life has taught me that this world isn’t perfect. It might not be perfect, but I’m going to get the victory.”
-Errol Spence, Jr., pre-fight press conference

The October 2019 incident, fortunately, affected no other drivers on the road but left a career in limbo. Memories of stars gone too soon like Diego Corrales from auto accidents contributed by alcohol came to mind that fateful day.

 Spence was luckily to walk away relatively unscathed. Since then, Terence “Bud” Crawford has begun a reign of terror in the welterweight division, and Spence has lost a little of his luster. With Crawford inevitably being the legacy-defining fight for him, at this point, Garcia is the gatekeeper to a shot at securing that legacy.

 Everything about Errol Spence, Jr. is under a microscope. His weight, his body’s viability, his demeanor; he is checking all boxes positively thus far. However, Danny Garcia is a dog and well-known for his power. An old adage reads that a hungry dog hunts best,  it a hungrier dog hunts even better.

 

Nobody forced me to fight Danny Garcia. But I wanted to face someone dangerous who would keep me focused and in the gym training hard. Fighting someone who’s a great fighter like Danny pushes me to another level. That’s the level I’m supposed to be at.”
-Errol Spence, Jr, pre-fight press conference

The only question to be answered on Saturday is which dog’s salivation is dripping feverishly to the canvas. The champ who took it for granted, or the former champ who knows there are still doubts.

Rhett Butler is a Boxing Writer Association of America Journalist, Play-By-Play Commentator, Combat Sports Insider, and Former Mixed Martial Arts and Boxing Promoter. The New York City native honed his skills at various news outlets including but not limited to: TIME Magazine, Money Magazine, CNN's Wolf Blitzer Reports, and more. Rhett hosts the PRITTY Left Hook podcast, a polarizing combat sports insider's take featuring the world's biggest names.