Mikey Garcia explains why he’s not fighting Regis Prograis
By Dan Ambrose: Mikey Garcia says the budget, timing, and schedules weren’t right for him to face Regis Prograis on October 16th on DAZN as he would have liked.
So instead of facing the former WBA light welterweight champion Prograis, the former four-division world champion Mikey (40-1, 30 KOs) is facing Sandor Martin (38-2, 13 KOs) on October 16th in the main event on DAZN at the Chukchansi Park, in Fresno, California.
This isn’t a fight that will require a great deal of promotion because there won’t be much interest in it by boxing fans.
It would seem evident that DAZN, Matchroom Boxing, and Mikey are getting the 28-year-old Spaniard Martin at a reasonable price.
Mikey says that if’s he’s victorious against Sandor, his next fight could be either a match against Prograis or a world title shot. If Mikey fights for a world title, he would be doing it at 147, as that’s the division that he now campaigns at.
Assuming Mikey fights for a world title in 2022, he would be facing the likes of Errol Spence Jr, Yordenis Ugas, or Terence Crawford.
The budget wasn’t there for Mikey vs. Prograis fight
“We were originally at trying to fight against Regis Prograis. The timing and schedules of DAZN and Matchroom didn’t quite fit with the budgets that were required and the dates and stuff.
“So we weren’t able to secure that,” said Mikey Garcia to Fighthype on WHY he’s fighting little-known Sandor Martin instead of the dangerous Prograis.
“We wanted a big fight, but the timing wasn’t available, and the dates weren’t available,” said Mikey on why he’s fighting ANOTHER low-level opponent in Sandor Martin rather than a good opponent.
“There’s a lot of things behind it. People assume and comment. They don’t know why some fights don’t happen,” said Mikey.
“He’s [Sandor Martin] going to come with a lot of motivation. He’s 38-2, so I can’t expect an easy fight. I got to be prepared for this fight. It’s not just about this fight, but what’s going to lead after that. It’s October 16th, up here in Fresno,” said Mikey.
It would have cost too much money to put the Mikey vs. Prograis fight together. It’s unclear whether Mikey wanted another $7 million paydays.
According to Chris Mannix of DAZN, the combined purses for the Mikey-Prograis fight they were looking to schedule for October 16th didn’t match the $7 million that Mikey got for his last fight against Jessie Vargas a year and a half ago in February 2020.
Why did DAZN pay Mikey $7 million to fight an arguably washed-up former WBO 147-lb champion Vargas? That’s the big question, as it appears DAZN vastly overpaid Mikey for a low-level fight.
If Mikey had fought someone good like Jaron Ennis or Vergil Ortiz Jr., $7 million would sound a little better. Even for those fights, Mikey hasn’t proven himself at welterweight to rate big money.
I mean, Mikey moved up to 147 and got soundly beaten by Errol Spence Jr. in 2019. Other than that, the only other fight Mikey has had at 147 was against the played-out Jessie Vargas, who isn’t a relevant fighter in the division.
In other words, you can’t plug Vargas in as an opponent on an excellent welterweight like Ennis, Vergil Ortiz Jr, or Keith Thurman and expect him to win or even be competitive.
Prograis fight possible down the line for Mikey
“He [Eddie Hearn] said DAZN didn’t have the budget for that type of fight [with Prograis],” said Mikey on why he couldn’t fight Regis on October 16th.
“That would require a different promotion, more time to promote, and more time to build up the fight. They didn’t have the time to do that.
“So the name that he brought up was Sandor Martin. He’s a Spaniard. And he’s a southpaw and a very skilled boxer.
“He’s ranked in the top 10, so it should be a good fight. It also allows me to come back and get in the rhythm.
“I haven’t fought in a year and a half now. It’s a good fight. If we get through this very well, I’m sure the next one will be a much better fight and a much more important fight too.
“It can be a fight with Regis or possibly a title fight or something like that. This is a good fight for my return. I wanted to stay at welterweight for that.
“The idea was to fight at 147, so I could continue and have a chance of fighting for a title there. But if not, I could come down to 140.
“For this fight, Sandor Martin’s people requested that we do a catchweight of 145. They wanted 140, but we agreed on 145,” said Mikey.
I’d be surprised if Mikey ever fights Prograis because he’s too dangerous, and the chances that it would go badly for him. If Mikey does fight for a world title at 147, he’s going to lose unless he’s given a controversial decision likely.
If Mikey fights WBA welterweight champion Yordenis Ugas, he might get lucky on the scorecard, but not if he fights Spence or Crawford.
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