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Luke Campbell: I’ll KO Ryan Garcia

Ryan Garcia

By Sean Jones: Luke Campbell is hoping that Ryan Garcia doesn’t back out of their WBC ordered title eliminator match because he feels he’ll knock him out. This is a match that Campbell (20-3, 16 KOs) is really looking forward to because it would give him one of his biggest victories as a professional.

Ryan Garcia’s reaction to Campbell’s trash-talking was weak on social media, which has some believing that he won’t be fighting him. Garcia’s management at Golden Boy Promotions likely will continue to move him slowly against weaker opposition. Even though Ryan isn’t a world champion, he’s making the kind of money that a belt holder would base on his popularity.

The 2012 Olympic gold medalist Campbell, 32, notes that boxing has been talking about the Garcia fight on social media ever since the WBC ordered it last week. Campbell says he’s excited about it, and he feels it’s an easier fight for him than if he were to challenge WBC lightweight champion, Devin Haney.

That’s the end goal for Campbell, taking on Haney for his World Boxing Council 135-lb belt. Campbell was supposed to have fought Haney for vacant WBC title last year, but Vasily Lomachenko petitioned to the WBC to be allowed to challenge for the title. So instead of Campbell facing Haney, he fought Lomachenko.

“Ryan Garcia’s social media following won’t help him in the ring,” said Campbell on social media.

Garcia reacts:

“Yeah, no s***.”

Ryan Garcia

Campbell hopeful Ryan faces him

“It’s a fight that I’m really up for, and I can go in there and showcase my skills,” said Campbell to Boxing Social when asked about his thoughts on the Ryan Garcia match. “I don’t think I’ve seen one of his fights.

“I’ve seen highlights, but I’ve never sat down and watched one of his fights. It’s never interested me. You can see he’s got speed, and he’s got power. Watching my last fight against Loma, I think I can be so much better than that, and I will be in my next fight.

“I think he’s [Garcia] is a more dangerous fight [than Devin Haney], but it’s an easier fight. I’m hitting harder than I ever hit before.

“I would love for it to happen, and I’m excited for it to happen,” said Campbell on a match between him and Ryan Garcia. “On social media, literally everybody was talking about it and got excited about it.

“That’s what it’s about. Everyone went crazy for that fight. He’s got a hell of a following as well. It would be a shame if it didn’t happen. If it doesn’t happen this time, it’s out of my hands.

“I think I win by KO,” said Campbell on his prediction on the Ryan Garcia fight.

People can only hope that the Campbell vs. Ryan Garcia fight will take place, but it’s not a sign that Golden Boy boss Oscar De La Hoya isn’t Tweeting on this fight. He’s not been doing that in this case.

Robert Garcia picks Ryan to beat Luke Campbell

“He lost to Linares and Lomachenko too, but he’s a pretty good fighter. He’s got good skills,” said trainer Robert Garcia to ESNEWS in talking about Campbell. “I think Ryan [wins], but it’s a good fight.”

“If he [Ryan] negotiates the purses he’s been asking for, it’s possible, but it’s a risky fight for Ryan,” said Garcia on Robert Garcia Unfiltered. “The way he looks, he doesn’t take fights.

Ryan Garcia

“I’m not saying he’s afraid to fight Hector [Tanajara], but I’ve been offered it, and the fight hasn’t finalized. And there’s been other fights that there’s been talk of him fighting [and they didn’t happen].

“I don’t know about him fighting Luke Campbell. That’s a pretty risky fight too. If the money’s right and he gets what he’s asking for, then the fight will happen. It is a risky fight, but if not, Hector is available. I think it’s a really great fight. Luke Campbell is very talented,” said Robert Garcia.

Robert is skeptical about Ryan taking the fight with Campbell. Ryan is only 21, and he would be taking a big risk facing the 32-year-old Campbell. The way that Campbell fought recently against Vasiliy Lomachenko, it’s difficult to picture Ryan being able to handle a give and take fight like that.

Campbell is a much more complete fighter now than when he first turned pro in 2013.

Campbell is a good fight for Ryan

“He’s lost to some great champions, but he’s a very talented fighter,” said Garcia. “It’s a really good test for Ryan. That’s what the WBC ordered, but in reality, we don’t know if those are the plans that Ryan and his team have.

“Golden Boy might say, ‘Yes, let’s do it,’ but Ryan and his management team might decide something else. I hope that fight happens. And I think it’s a really good fight for Ryan.

“I truly believe Ryan wins, but it won’t be easy. Luke Campbell is a very smart technical fighter, and it won’t be an easy fight for Ryan, but those are the types of fights that he needs to take to get into the world title fights.

Ryan Garcia

“With Ryan, I don’t think his management are looking to make him a world champion. They’re not in a hurry to do it. They’re taking their time. He’s young, he’s generating a lot of attention, and people want to see him fight whoever he fights,” said Garcia.

What Robert Garcia says about Ryan’s management, wanting to turn him into a pro slowly, is true. They’re not going to throw Ryan into the deep end at this early stage of his career.

Putting Ryan in with Jorge Linares might be just as much of a mistake as it would be against Campbell. Linares beat Campbell several years ago, and he had too much speed. Ryan would have similar problems with Linares’ speed and combination punching.

Luke has learned a lot in the last seven years, and he’s a seasoned pro capable of going to war against the best.

Ryan Garcia’s management won’t take the Campbell fight

“So I think they’re going to take their time,” said Garcia about Golden Boy, likely not letting Ryan face Campbell. “I don’t think he fights Luke Campbell. He fights someone else, and he keeps winning and building up his record and keeps getting followers and attention from the whole world.

“A lot of people follow him that don’t even know boxing. Whoever he fights, people are still going to watch because it’s Ryan Garcia. I don’t think it [Ryan vs. Campbell] happens, but if it doesn’t happen, I’d be more than happy to get one of my fighters to take that position against Luke Campbell.

“First, we [Hector Tanajara] have to fight against Mercito Gesta. If we get the win over Gesta with Tanajara, I would be more than happy to take that position that Ryan Garcia has been offered to fight Campbell for the WBC eliminator, and then the winner fights for the title,” said Garcia.

It would be a big surprise at this point if Golden Boy let Ryan Garcia take the fight with Campbell. If De La Hoya is annoyed with Ryan and wants to throw him to the wolves, then he might pull the trigger on this fight.

Aside from that, I don’t think De La Hoya will let Ryan tangle with Campbell for another three to four years. By then, Ryan will be 24 or 25, and Campbell will be around 36. It would be a repeat of how Golden Boy waited until Gennadiy Golovkin was 35 before letting Canelo Alvarez fight him.


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