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Ryan Garcia explains why he’s retiring at 26

Ryan Garcia

By Jim Maltzman: Highly popular Ryan Garcia still plans on retiring from boxing in four years at age 26, but what will surprise many fans is why.

Despite having the potential to be great in the sport, interim WBC lightweight champion ‘Kingry’ Ryan (21-0, 18 KOs) says he wants to move into MMA and learn to do that. Ryan wants former UFC star Ben Askren to show him the ropes and teach him the sport.

It’ll be a long haul for Ryan if he chooses to go into MMA, considering that he would be playing catch-up with fighters from wrestling backgrounds and know how to grapple. Although striking is important in MMA, being able to grapple is arguably even more important.

At 26, Ryan Garcia would be getting a late start in learning the trade to compete in MMA, as many of the fighters that compete in that trade start early, often in sports like wrestling and Jiu-Jitsu.

It can take years to learn enough for a fighter to be able to compete in MMA, and even then, the money might be great compared to what King Ryan can make in boxing.

“Hey, let me tell you something, Ben, I’ve never said this on air. But after, I’ve always said I’m going to retire at 26. Everybody looks at me crazy, right? But I’m doing it, to go into the MMA ring,” said Ryan Garcia to Ben Askren @ Fierce Talk podcast.

It is shocking that Ryan would choose to go into MMA, as he doesn’t look like he’s cut out for that sport. There have been boxers that have gone into MMA, but none were millionaires like Ryan Garcia.

What would be even more confusing is why Ryan would walk away from boxing when he has the potential to be really special like Oscar De La Hoya and Floyd Mayweather Jr.

“So I’m going to need you to teach me some wrestling techniques before I start even trying to dive in there. So a little wrestling, and then we’ll go from there,” said Ryan Garcia.

Not only can Ryan accomplish things in boxing like those fighters, but he can make massive money before retiring in his 30s. It’s a lot different in MMA, where only a very few make big money.

The organizations make a killing, but not the fighters. Conor McGregor is one of the few that made money in MMA, but oddly enough, he made his fortune in the boxing ring against Mayweather.

As far as Ryan Garcia’s immediate future, he’s been ordered to face Javier Fortuna in the WBC title eliminator by the World Boxing Council. The winner of the Garcia vs. Fortuna fight will be mandatory to WBC lightweight champion Devin Haney.

Ryan hasn’t said whether he’d agree to fight Fortuna or not, as he’s interested in facing Manny Pacquiao and Gervonta ‘Tank’ Davis.

There’s a lot more money at stake for King Ryan in taking on Pacquiao and Tank Davis than what he can get battling former WBA super featherweight champion Fortuna.




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