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Mikey Garcia open to fighting Terence Crawford

Manny Pacquiao, Jessie Vargas, Mikey Garcia, Terence Crawford boxing photo

By Chris Williams: Mikey Garcia says he’d be willing to take on welterweight champion Terence Crawford but Manny Pacquiao is the fighter that is his main target for his next fight in the summer.

Crawford would obviously would be Mikey’s third choice after Manny and Spence. Those were the two names that Mikey was calling out after his win over Jessie Vargas last Saturday night in Frisco, Texas.

Garcia (40-1, 30 KOs) wants to become a 5-division world champion in 2020, and he believes he can achieve that by facing Pacquiao, Crawford or Errol Spence Jr.

Fans would like to see Mikey take a real test by facing Crawford because Vargas wasn’t a true test. He’s part-time fighter at this point in his career, and not among the best in the welterweight division.

Crawford would be a good fight for Mikey

Just how serious Mikey, 32, is about his interest in challenging WBO welterweight champion Crawford (36-0, 27 KOs) for his title is hard to really know.

Mikey feels he earned the right to fight for a world title by beating former welterweight champion Vargas by a 12 round unanimous decision last Saturday night on DAZN at The Star in Frisco, Texas.

Mikey was hit a lot in the fight, perhaps more than he’s ever been hit during his 14-year pro career, but he won by the scores 116-111, 116-111, and 114-113.  Unknown to casual boxing fans, Vargas ISN’T considered one of the elite level welterweight. Mikey’s choice of Vargas to fight last Saturday reflected his desire to face a guy that was beatable but known by hardcore boxing fans.

Vargas is a fighter that has slipped OUT of the top 15 at 147 due to his inactivity and the fact that he couldn’t beat Thomas Dulorme and Adrien Broner.

“If Terence is available, I’d like to get in the ring with him. I think the bigger fights there. Everybody would like to see me and Manny. That’s a fight that I would love to entertain, but I’m available. I’ll fight anybody and I’m not going to run from anybody. I’m going to fight the champions, and he’s one of the champions also,” said Mikey.

Contrary to Mikey’s opinion about “Everybody” wanting to see him fight Pacquiao, that’s NOT true. While some boxing fans want to see Mikey and Pacquiao fight, most are likely indifferent about that fight. The problem Mikey has is he’s been out of the picture for so long that he’s not really kept his popularity up, and he’s still unproven at welterweight.

Mikey should have fought a top welterweight

You can’t give Mikey much credit for beating Vargas because he’s a 2nd tier fighter, who is no longer relevant at 147 and he’s accomplished nothing at 154. If Mikey wanted to prove himself at welterweight, he should have fought Vergil Ortiz Jr., Yorgenis Ugas or Shawn Porter. I don’t think he’d beat any of those guys, which might be the reason why weren’t selected.

“I’m ready to fight anybody but the fight with Manny has been talked about for many years. After tonight’s performance, they’ll consider that a great match-up, and the fans and all you guys will consider that the number one fight for me. I’d love to fight Manny and I think it would be the perfect match-up for my next fight,” said Mikey.

Mikey would have A LOT of problems with Crawford. The power, counter-punching, and skills of Crawford would likely be too much for Mikey. It’s doubtful that Mikey would be able to go 12 rounds against Crawford like he did against Spence and Vargas.  Mikey would be a huge underdog against any of the top welterweight in the division.

Knowledgable boxing fans don’t consider Jessie Vargas as a top tier 147-lb higher. He’s a guy from the past, whose career went off the rails after he lost to Pacquiao in 2016.

Can Mikey beat the best welterweights?

  • Keith Thurman
  • Terence Crawford
  • Manny Pacquiao
  • Yordenis Ugas
  • Danny Garcia
  • David Avanesyan
  • Shawn Porter
  • Vergil Ortiz Jr
  • Egidijus Kavaliauskas

The question was put to Mikey at the post-fight news conference on whether he would take a fight with Crawford, and he looked pressured to answer. Mikey is mostly focused on the Pacquiao fight, which would give him a good retirement payday.

A fight against Crawford might not sell, and it could end badly for Mikey. He’s with ESPN and Top Rank, and that could complicate things for Mikey because he’s got one fight left with Matchroom Boxing USA on DAZN.

“I think I answered a lot of those questions last night. I fought a tough opponent in Jessie,” said Mikey Garcia at the post-fight news conference last Saturday night after beating Vargas. “Jessie is a solid welterweight, big and strong, and he’s fought the best in the division.

“I’ve got to leave it up to you guys,” said Mikey. “I think I did good. And I think I showed that I’m resilient and strong, and I went up against a bigger man and boxed effectively. I think I performed well and was able to overcome those size advantages early on to show that I can be a solid welterweight,” said Mikey.

Mikey: Errol Spence never hurt me

I already faced Errol and he’s probably the best welterweight, and he was never able to hurt me,” said Mikey. “I think I can really do something at welterweight, and I think I can become a champion. I’m ready to fight for a world title. We’ve been talking about Manny and maybe a rematch with Errol in the near future. Me, I’m ready to fight anybody,” said Mikey.

Spence looked like he wasn’t trying to hurt Mikey in their fight last year, and it was a boring fight for a lot of fans. Unlike Mikey’s fight against Vargas, he didn’t take risks against Spence by opening up with his offense. Mikey mostly stayed in his shell the entire might, coming up and doing largely nothing to initiate against Errol.

“That’s what my attention will turn to in the next couple of weeks to try and put a deal together for Mikey that he’s happy with to take that fight, and to try and make sure that Manny Pacquiao is up for that fight,” said promoter Eddie Hearn when asked the possibility of a fight between Mikey and Pacquiao for Saudi in July. “I think he’s one of the best fighters in boxing.

“Mikey has been chasing him around for two years. I’m going to make sure I put together a very attractive proposition for him moving forward, and DAZN loved working with him, and we loved working with him,” said Hearn. “We saw a huge crowd in here tonight, and I really feel that Manny Pacquiao against Mikey Garcia is a monstrous fight,” said Hearn.

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