By Dan Ambrose: Ryan Garcia is the fight that Top Rank wants for Teofimo Lopez’s next match in 2021, and NOT WBC lightweight champion Devin Haney. The six million followers the 22-year-old Ryan has on social media would result in a lot of interest in a fight between him and the widely popular Teofimo.
According to Top Rank boss Bob Arum, the unbeaten King Ryan (20-0, 17 KOs) brings more to the table in terms of fan interest for unified lightweight champion Teofimo (16-0, 12 KOs) than a unification match against Haney (24-0, 15 KOs).
Arum says the problem that the 21-year-old Haney has is he’s not well known with casual boxing fans, and the reason for that is he’s never fought on a major platform.
To bring in the most money, Teofimo needs to fight Ryan Garcia next, not Haney. Ryan will need to win his next match against Luke Campbell on December 5th to stay in the running for a fight against Teofimo.
“If Lopez will stay at lightweight and there is no rematch, the fight that I would like to see him is against this Garcia kid, Ryan Garcia, who is fighting Luke Campbell,” said Arum to IFL TV.
Arum wants Ryan Garcia for Teofimo
“If Garcia beats Campbell, you have to understand the biggest group of fight fans, particularly if you’re talking about pay-per-view, are the Hispanics. Ryan Garcia has a tremendous following on social media, and that fight would be a lot more interesting than a Devin Haney fight.
“Yeah, I think so,” Arum said when asked if his preference is for Teofimo to fight Ryan Garcia, Gervonta Davis, and then Devin Haney. “I’m not talking about who is better or who is the worst. I’m talking about what would be a more lucrative fight.
“First, I would say Ryan Garcia if he beats Luke Campbell,” Arum said, who his preference is for Lopez’s next fight. “Secondly, it would be Gervonta Davis if he beats Santa Cruz, and third would be Devin Haney, who essentially is known in very small boxing circles, but nobody really knows him because he’s never fought on a big platform,” said Arum.
Teofimo has mostly talked about wanting to fight Haney next, but Arum can convince him and his father Teofimo Sr to go in the direction of Ryan Garcia.
Golden Boy won’t be an obstacle to Teofimo vs. Ryan Garcia fight
“If I called my old friend Oscar [De La Hoya], he would agree to that fight in a minute,” Arum said when asked if Golden Boy Promotions will allow Ryan Garcia to fight Teofimo.
De La Hoya has already said that he’s in favor of Ryan Garcia fighting Teofimo next, as long as he wins his next fight against Campbell.