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Mikey Garcia vs. Yuriorkis Gamboa in the works for May 17th, says Arum

mikey544By Chris Williams: WBO super featherweight champion Mikey Garcia (34-0, 28 KO’s) could be on the verge of facing his first real test of his career in Yuriorkis Gamboa (23-0, 16 KO’s). According to Steve Kim, Bob Arum of Top Rank is looking to put together a fight between Mikey and Gamboa for May 17th at the LA Forum.

The 26-year-old Mikey is in a situation where he has to take on a really tough opponent in his next fight at lightweight for him to be able to be taken serious as an opponent for Manny Pacquiao in September. If Arum tries to push another Juan Carlos Burgos opponent for Mikey to fight, it’s not going to fly with the boxing public, and it probably won’t go over too well with HBO either.

But to be honest, HBO should have known that Burgos was going to be a dud as Mikey’s opponent given that Burgos had fought in consecutive draws in his last two fights against Yakubu Amidu and Roman Martinez. HBO should have seen those two fights and said no to Arum when he tried pushing the Mikey vs. Burgos fight as an appealing one for U.S. fans to see on HBO.

Anyone who had seen how awful Burgos had looked against Amidu and Martinez would have known that a fight between Mikey and Burgos would be pure poison to watch, and a sure fire way to put fans to sleep. That’s on HBO for agreeing to show the Burgos-Mikey fight because a little homework would have saved HBO a lot of trouble in airing that fight.

Gamboa has a chance to destroy Mikey’s dreams of getting the Pacquiao fight, while at the same time ruining Arum’s dreams of having Mikey as his next star. If Gamboa beats Mikey, there’s no way that Arum can sell a Pacquiao-Mikey fight to the boxing public. That doesn’t mean that Arum won’t go ahead and peddle a fight between Mikey and Pacquiao anyway as a PPV on HBO. We just saw Arum match Pacquiao against Brandon Rios last November despite the fact that Rios was coming off of a loss to Mike Alvarado. This isn’t the first time that Arum has had Pacquiao fight opposition coming off of a loss. Pacquiao also fought Joshua Clottey in 2010. Clottey had been beaten in his fight before that by Miguel Cotto. So a loss for Mikey to Gamboa won’t wreck Arum’s plans completely in matching Mikey against Pacquiao, but I think it’ll take a lot of interest out of the fight to where it’ll be a PPV fight that’ll likely draw around 400,000 PPV buys.

Gamboa has the speed, power to make Mikey look really bad and possibly stop him. Mikey’s chin does not seem to be first rate, and if Gamboa is able to land even a small handful of hard shots, I wouldn’t be surprised to see Mikey out cold on the canvas with Robert Garcia hovering over him.

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