By: Hans Themistode
The sport of boxing is somewhat like a waiting game isn’t it?
How many times have fans wanted to see certain matchups but were forced to wait? Too many times to remember.
Unlike other sports, boxing doesn’t have to capitulate to the demands of its fans. Take a sport such as basketball. The schedule dictates that everyone plays against one another. It doesn’t matter if you are ready or not. You are thrown into the fire immediately.
How about boxing’s closest sport of comparison? Mixed martial arts (MMA). For that form of combat, it doesn’t matter if a fighter is too young or too old, they will share the octagon against one another. Boxing doesn’t quite work like that.
The first event that comes to mind that resembles this issue is Floyd Mayweather vs Manny Pacquiao. Fans waited over 5 years to see those them share the ring against one another. Today, we have two fighters who although are great, aren’t quite in the primes of their career just yet. Those fighters would be WBC Lightweight champion Devin Haney (24-0, 15 KOs) and rising star Ryan Garcia (19-0, 16 KOs). Both fighters are 20 and 21 years of age respectively.
Cast aside their ages and these fighters have the look of seasoned veterans with plenty of star power.
For what it’s worth, Haney has already called for a showdown against Garcia with his promoter Eddie Hearn tabbing it as one of the biggest fights in the sport of boxing.
“Ryan Garcia is a mega-fight for 2020,” said Hearn when discussing a showdown between the two.
Haney co-signed his promoters sentiments following his shutout victory over Alfredo Santiago this past Saturday night.
“That’s a fight that is being stirred up. Hopefully we can make that fight happen in 2020 or 2021. It’ll happen sooner rather than later.” Said Haney.
Sooner rather than later is an interesting choice of words. Just how soon could a contest between them make place? Haney could be spot on in his 2021 timeline.
“Realistically speaking we probably won’t fight until 2021. That’s just how the business is,” said Garcia when conversing about a contest with Haney. “They know what the big fights are. Floyd Mayweather vs Manny Pacquiao, GGG vs Canelo. There’s just timing and it brews over. We still need a few other fights to make it bigger.”
Garcia is right. In 2021, Garcia will be 23 while Haney on the other hand will be 22, but still, is this the right window for a contest of this magnitude to happen?
With both fighters seemingly not even scratching the surface of their potential, a contest between them seems premature.
Fans don’t want to wait for what felt like a lifetime for Mayweather vs Pacquiao, but at this point in their careers it would be much too early.
Give each fighter the opportunity to build their names and their resume. There isn’t one notable name that stands out on either one of their dockets at the moment. It’s refreshing and encouraging to see two great young fighters willing to not only face each other but anyone that is placed in front of them. However, let’s allow this fight to build. They both have plenty of time.