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Ryan Garcia and Jorge Linares sharing Feb.14 card in Anaheim, CA

Jorge Linares

By Sean Jones: Unbeaten lightweight contender Ryan Garcia and former three division world champion Jorge Linares will be sharing the same card in two months from now on February 14 at Honda Center in Anaheim, California. According to @MikeCoppinger, Linares (46-5, 28 KOs) and the 21-year-old Garcia (19-0, 16 KOs) will be facing each other in 2020.

There’s no word on who ‘Kingry’ Garcia and Linares will be facing on the February 14 card.  The 34-year-old Linares has a 2-2 record in his last 4 fights, and he’s looking he’s about done with his career. Golden Boy Promotions are picking the right time to match Ryan against Linares, as the former three division world champion hasn’t looked good since 2017.

Linares on the decline

Things haven’t gone well lately for the Japan based Linares latestly, being that he’s lost to Pablo Cesar Cano and Vasiliy Lomachenko by knockout defeat since 20218.  Linares was blown out completely by Cano last January in an ill-advised move up to 140.

It’s pretty clear that Linares picked the wrong guy to fight in his first match at 140, as he didn’t have the size or the chin to take on a heavy puncher like Cano. Linares did bounce back from his loss in defeating 2nd tier fighter Al Toyogon (10-5-1, 6 KOs) by a 10 round unanimous decision last September. It’s good that Linares won his last fight, but the quality of his opponent was one of the lowest since his win over Francisco Javier Prieto in 2014.

Golden Boy are hoping to turn Garcia into their next star in their stable, but it’s still too early to know if he’ll pan out or not. Garcia looked good in his last fight in destroying fringe contender Romero Duno (21-2, 16 KOs) by a 1st round knockout last month on November 2 on the undercard of Canelo Alvarez vs. Sergey Kovalev on DAZN.

Linares might have too much for Ryan Garcia

Ryan doesn’t look like he’s in the same class as talented lightweights like Devin Haney and Gervonta Davis, but that doesn’t mean that Golden Boy won’t be successful in turning him into a star. With the right kind of match-making like they did with Canelo Alvarez, ‘The Flash’ Garcia could become a star without a serious test. Look at Canelo. He didn’t fight a dangerous guy until his match with Gennadiy Golovkin, and even then, he arguably lost to him twice.

Canelo didn’t fight GGG until he was 35, and before then he had controversial wins over Erislandy Lara and Austin Trout. If Golden Boy can do what they did for Canelo, Ryan Garcia could become a star as well. The key obviously is to make the fights at the right time. Waiting until Linares is around 35 before letting Ryan fight him gives the the young would be star a good chance of winning.

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