Schaefer: Danny Garcia vs. Mauricio Herrera is a terrific match-up
By Dan Ambrose: This Saturday night WBA/WBC light welterweight champion Danny Garcia (27-0, 16 KO’s) will be defending his titles against #4 WBA, #10 WBC contender Mauricio Herrera (20-3, 7 KO’s) on Showtime from the Coliseo Ruben Rodriguez, Bayamon, Puerto Rico. While this is technically a title defense for Garcia, it’s viewed more as a tune-up/stay busy fight by hardcore fans, who have shown very little interest in this fight for obvious reasons.
I’m surprised Showtime is televising the Garcia-Herrera fight as the main event this Saturday because there is absolutely no interest in this fight among boxing fans in the internet forums. Showtime vice president Stephen Espinoza should have gotten the drift by now that this isn’t a fight that fans are excited about and instead replaced this fight with the Juan Manuel Lopez vs. the Daniel Ponce de Leon in the main event, and then Deontay Wilder vs. Malik Scott as the co-feature bout.
If Showtime is going to be televising Garcia’s fights on a routine basis, they need to at least make sure that he’s fighting quality opposition that interest fans. There is no interest with this fight, and if this was something that Golden Boy Promotions had tried to push forward on a network like HBO, I could see them saying no to it.
Golden Boy Promotions CEO Richard Schaefer believes this fight is what he feels is a terrific match-up, but it’s hard to agree with him. Herrera has lost 2 out of his last 4 fights, and he’s probably the last guy you would think of if you were to select a guy that was deserving of a title fight, unless you were to lower your standards considerably.
“I think we have certainly the ingredients for a terrific match-up,” Schaefer said. “With Mauricio Herrera we have somebody who has been waiting for this opportunity, who is extremely skilled, knows how to be a spoiler as well, he’s the last man to beat Provodnikov as well.”
This fight is a terrific alright; it’s a terrific mismatch.
Herrera is also the guy that was soundly beaten by Mike Alvarado and Karim Mayfield AFTER his controversial win over Provodnikov. I had Herrera losing to Provodnikov, but even if you can count that as a win for him, there is no question at all that Herrera was beaten up by Alvarado and Mayfield.
Herrera is basically the equivalent of Alfredo Angulo for Danny Garcia in that he’s an easy mark that will make Danny look good in front of the Puerto Rican fans. Garcia did not look good at all in his last fight against Lucas Matthysse, and he chose not to give him a rematch. So Herrera i being brought out to make Herrera look good in the same way that Saul “Canelo” Alvarez looked good against a mediocre fighter. If Schaefer wanted to make for an entertaining fight, he’d have brought Matthysse back in for Garcia to fight instead of someone with 2 defeats in his last 4 fights like Herrera.
Danny is reluctant to move up in weight to the welterweight division for some reason, and the only thing you can think is that he’s not looking forward to having to mix it up against guys like Keith Thurman. I don’t think Danny could beat a fighter like Thurman, and if he moves up in weight, he would have to fight him sooner rather than later. But at light welterweight, Garcia has a very, very weak division once you get past Matthysse. The division is very bad. There’s Lamont Peterson, Matthysse, Ruslan Provodnikov, Juan Manuel Marquez, and Zab Judah.
Those are the only really good fighters at 140, and Danny can’t fight Marquez or Provodnikov right now because they’re under contract with Top Rank. Danny won’t fight Matthysse again, and I doubt Peterson will face him because he’s got a good thing going for him in defending his IBF title against the weak contenders. Danny can pretty much just sit back forever fighting the likes of Herrera, and the other weak contenders that the WBC and WBA have ranked in their top 15.
Here are the guys that the WBC has ranked in their top 15:
1. Viktor Postol
2. Selcuk Aydin
3. Lucas Matthysse
4. Roberto Ortiz
5. Humberto Soto
6. Thomas Dulorme
7. Alberto Mosquera
8. Cesar Cuenca
9. Min-Wook Kim
10. Mauricio Herrera
11. Karim Mayfield
12. Michele Di Rocco
13. Anton Novikov
14. Henry Lundy
15. Pablo Cesar Cano
There are no quality opponents among the list other than Matthysse. So what we’re going to be seeing is more and more fights like Garcia-Herrera for Danny.