Where is Danny Garcia?
By: Matthew N. Becher
Danny Garcia is a 28 year old fighter from the rich boxing city of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He has a perfect record, consisting of 32 wins in 32 fights, with 18 wins coming by way of the Knockout. He was the lineal champion in the Jr. Welterweight division and only recently moved up to the 147lb-welterweight division last year, when he beat an aging Paulie Malignaggi. Since beating Malignaggi, Garcia was able to fight Robert Guerrero for the Vacant WBC welterweight title that Floyd Mayweather left when he retired.
Last week, it was announced that Manny Pacquiao would forgo his retirement and fight this year. It was also announced that the young Danny Garcia was officially offered the fight by Top Rank, Pacquiao’s promoters. Garcia was offered a career high payday as told to USA Today on Friday, “My Dad told me that an offer was made, around $3-4 million”. This would be double the amount that Garcia has ever made for a fight and presumably would also be his first fight on Pay Per View. Instead he turned it down. The short list now for Pacquiao is between, Terrence Crawford, Viktor Postol and Jesse Vargas.
One of the most outrageous things, besides turning down a career high payday against one of the best fighters of your era, is the consistent inactivity that Garcia displays. Since 2013, Garcia has never fought more than twice a year. Even this year, he has only fought once, in January, and has no fight announced for anytime this year. This is one of the 147lb champs, who belongs to the PBC stable that is littered with the top welterweights in the division, but yet he sits on the sideline.
This may become the way that fighters begin to handle themselves as the boxing world turns more in to the business world. Garcia, for example, got paid a cool million dollars to fight Rod Salka in 2014. Salka had never fought above 135, and was no risk to Garcia. Garcia wouldn’t need to worry about weight, or damage to his body and he would walk away with a very good amount of money. If fighters are paid this well, and don’t have to worry about taking any punishment, why work harder.
Garcia is seen as a “cherry Picker”. A person that can pick and choose his fights to be beneficial to him. He fought an aging Erik Morales (twice) and Zab Judah. A small Rod Salka, and a foot out the ring Paul Malignaggi. For each of those small chance bouts, he was paid handsomely and was never really in any doubt of losing. His fight against Lucas Matthysse was the biggest gamble of his career and he garnered a lot of respect for that fight, but he followed it up with two controversial wins against Mauricio Herrera and Lamont Peterson. Two fights that many people believe he lost. Possibly he also does. Maybe those close calls have made Garcia in some way afraid to take on another tough opponent. Only time can really tell, but the clock keeps ticking on 2016, and the kid from Philly has still only fought once.