Mikey Garcia: The Pacquiao fight is great for my career
By Dan Ambrose: Mikey Garcia could be about to finally get the payday fight that he’s been chasing after for years against Manny Pacquiao. Yesterday, Mikey (40-1, 33 KOs) revealed that he’s close to getting the fight against the superstar Pacquiao (62-7-2, 39 KOs) done.
This is a fight that won’t supply much sporting value, as the winner isn’t going to turn around to win a world title.
Likewise, it’s already been shown in Mikey’s fight against welterweight champion Errol Spence Jr that he doesn’t have the size or enough talent to do anything in the 147-lb division.
Mikey is obviously staying in that weight class talk his way into payday fights that he has no chance of winning. Hence, Mikey appears to have talked his way into a fight against Pacquiao, which shapes to be a one-sided mismatch in favor of the Filipino star.
Is Pacquiao vs. Mikey great for the fans?
“We’re finalizing all the details. We hope to get an exact date in the next few days,” Mikey said to JoAnkier.
“It’s a great fight. I think it’s great for my career and for the fans. I think it’s very exciting for boxing in general to see this type of fight.”
And I don’t see this as a “great fight,” as Mikey does. It’s more of a money-grab type of fight, one that will make Mikey and Pacquiao money but do nothing in terms of long-term. A great fight would for Pacquiao to fight relevant guys at 135, 140, or 147.
These are great fights for Pacquiao:
- Errol Spence
- Terence Crawford
- Shawn Porter
- Josh Taylor
- Vasily Lomachenko
- Teofimo Lopez
- Gervonta Davis
- Devin Haney
Mikey isn’t a great fight for Pacquiao because he’s not an active fighter, and he looks like he’s trying to get paydays in fights that he can’t win. In other words, Mikey is taking advantage of the success he had many years ago in a career that is done.
Mikey could be relevant if he stayed active and fought in a division that he had the size to compete in.
Where does the Pacquiao-Mikey winner go?
If Errol Spence decided to move up to 168 and spend the rest of his career trying to talk his way into big fights, he would do as poorly as Mikey. Errol would have no shot of beating the top fighters.
The Pacquiao vs. Mikey fight is a one-off with the winner going nowhere and the loser likely to continue to try and scrape together fights against fading top fighters.
If Pacquiao wins, we’ll likely see him looking in Ryan Garcia or Conor McGregor’s directions. With Mikey, he’ll probably try and get fights against faded fighters like Danny Garcia, Keith Thurman and lose to those guys.
Last year, Mikey looked terrible in beating a shot Jessie Vargas by a close 12 round decision. Vargas was never a great fighter, to begin with, but he looked completely over-the-hill against Mikey, and yet he almost beat him.
Mikey is saying it’s going to be great for his career and the fans. It’s obviously good for Mikey’s bank account, but it will not do much for the fans because neither fighter is relevant at this point.
Manny vs. Garcia has an exhibition-esque feel
Pacquiao vs. Mikey is the equivalent of an old-timer’s fight, but that will count on their records. Pacquiao, 42, hasn’t seen action in two years, and he’s been mentioned as wanting fights against Conor McGregor and Ryan Garcia.
“Just to share the ring with a living legend like Manny, it does amazing things for my career, and I just really hope the fans appreciate,” said Mikey.
Maybe I’m missing something, but I don’t see Mikey doing anything with his career at this point other than trying to get paydays. He’s not fighting contenders, he’s not going for belts, and he’s not been staying active.
He looks like he’s just trying to talk his way into big fights without actually earning them like other fighters.
The only thing Mikey has been doing is hounding for the Pacquiao fight, and getting fat during the last year. It doesn’t seem like a fight that Mikey can win because he’s not a welterweight, which was proven in his fights against Spence and Vargas.
Where does the Pacquiao-Mikey winner go?
For the fans who say that Mikey should fight at 140, that’s not a good idea. If you watch how bad Mikey looked in his close win over Sergey Lipinets at 140 in 2018, he doesn’t belong in that weight class either. Mikey took a beating from Lipinets, and his head looked badly swollen at the end.
Lipinets is nowhere near as good as the top guys that dominate the 140-lb division today. If Mikey were to move down to 140, he would have to fight Regis Prograis, Josh Taylor, and Jose Ramirez if he wanted to do anything in the division.
Mikey loses to all of those guys, and maybe just as bad as he was beaten by Spence.
The only weight classes that Mikey has any chance of doing anything at are at 135 or 130. It’s too late for Mikey to return to those weight classes because he’s been heavy for too long, and it would drain him if he tried to go back down.
With Pacquiao looking to face those types of fighters, it seems apparent that he’s just cashing out before retiring. Mikey fits the same category as Ryan and McGregor in terms of him having almost no shot of beating Pacquiao.
What’s disappointing about Mikey is how he’s derailed his own career before it’s time. He’s only 32, and yet he stopped competing for belts at lightweight and moved up 147, a division he’s too small to compete in.
Some boxing fans believe that Mikey left the lightweight division because he was afraid of fighting Vasily Lomachenko. If Mikey had stayed at 135, he would have faced huge pressure from people to fight Lomachenko.
So by leaving the 135-lb division, Mikey avoided what would likely have been a loss to Lomachenko. Mikey was only 30-years-old at the time that he moved up to 147, and he was much too young to go on the cash-out circuit.
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