Advertisement
Advertisement

Mikey Garcia Motivated By Family, Creating a Legacy

By Francisco Salazar

Nothing comes easy for professional prizefighters. Grueling training camps. Early morning runs. Aches and pains that may or may not go away.

One would think that undefeated featherweight Miguel Angel "Mikey" Garcia would have it better than other fighters. Both of his older brothers boxed professionally, with Robert becoming a world champion. His father Eduardo, who picked strawberries in the Oxnard Plains, trained Fernando Vargas to a world title.

However, Garcia, poised in the ring beyond his 25 years of age, has worked just as hard, if not harder, to demonstrate that he deserving of being called the best. After this Saturday night, he would just be content to be called a world champion.

Garcia will challenge Orlando Salido for the WBO featherweight title at the Theatre of Madison Square Garden in New York City. The bout will be televised on HBO’s “Boxing After Dark” at 9:45 PM ET/ PT.

It would be an understatement that Garcia has been around boxing his whole life. Whether he would be watching his brother train, around his Dad when he barked instructions to Vargas, or as he carved out a decent amateur career, Garcia absorbed a great deal of knowledge of the sport.

All of his boxing knowledge will be put to use as he takes on the formidable Salido, who knocked out Juan Manuel Lopez twice within a year. Lopez was looked at as a top featherweight and was unbeaten when Salido defeated him both times.

Garcia, who was raised in Oxnard, but trains in Riverside, was scheduled to face Salido on November 10th. However, one month prior to the bout taking place, Salido allegedly slammed a car door on his right hand, breaking his right index finger.

Garcia (30-0, 26 KOs) went ahead with fighting on November 10th at the Wynn Resort in Las Vegas, fighting and defeating late replacement Jonathan Victor Barros in the eighth round of a scheduled 10 round bout.

Despite the delay in fighting Salido, Garcia remained in good spirits.

“I’m very happy with the camp we had,” said Garcia over the phone Thursday from his New York City hotel room. “I’m more excited for this fight and the opportunity that it brings. I’m very motivated and am mentally ready to go. I’m not nervous at all. I’m very relaxed.”

With the amount of experience and the face that Garcia has excelled in the sport, some boxing writers have analyzed that he could have fought for a world title earlier in his career. He was slated to fight WBA featherweight champion Celestino Caballero on June 30th, but Caballero backed out of a verbal agreement. After Caballero’s and Garcia’s representatives failed to arrive to a proposed September 8th bout, Garcia and Salido agreed to fight each other. 

Salido has won his last five bouts in a row, is coming off a third round knockout over Moises Gutierrez on July 28th. The fighter from Ciudad Obregon, Sonora, Mexico has complimented his power with more boxing ability, making him a more dangerous and versatile fighter.

However, Garcia is ready for any style Salido brings to the fight on Saturday night.

“We worked on many things in the gym and simulated many scenarios,” said Garcia, who is co-trained by Robert and his father Eduardo. “We moved on sticking and moving, pressing the fight. We did a lot of stuff. I’m very confident of all the work I did in camp to prepare for him.”

Garcia is no stranger to the trials and politics of boxing. Having been around the sport, Garcia has always understood the notion of expect the unexpected.

However, what has remained consistent are the people whom he surrounds himself with. Hard work and dedication have been mainstays in boxing, but motivation and past experiences is what molds champions.

Having seen his father work in the strawberry fields of the Oxnard Plains has enabled Garcia to remain humble and never forgetting his past. It is a testament of why he believes he has been successful and why he will be the fourth fighter representing Oxnard to win a world title, after his brother Robert, Fernando Vargas, and Brandon Rios.

“A victory (on Saturday) will represent a victory for my whole family. I’m proud of what my brother has done, but I want to make a name for myself and establish my own career. I want to go as far as I could go. I never forget my past because it has led to my success.”

“I’ve earned it and the only thing left is to win that world title.”

Follow Francisco Salazar @Salazar_soccer

User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by Bushbaby on 01-19-2013

Boxing fans need to pay attention to how Mikey was brought through the pro ranks. He wasn't "handed" a title against a bum, racking up meaningless defenses. He was brought along slowly, gradually increasing his level, until his people felt…

Comment by jri9d0 on 01-19-2013

I'm just glad that he is FINALLY stepping up his competition. Real talk!

Comment by flint on 01-19-2013

mikey has done things the right way and has earned this shot. this will be a good fight. i like both of them.

Post a Comment/View More User Comments (3)
Top Headlines Tyrone Nurse Says Willie Limond Will Never Make it To Ricky Burns Arum Praises Pacquiao For Rejecting Offer To Fight in Olympics Roach Backs Canelo: Golovkin The Best, But Brings NO Money! Donnie Nietes, Raul Garcia Make Weight - Melindo is Way Over Photos: Shane Mosley, David Avanesyan Putting in Work For Battle Demetrius Andrade Focused: My Time's Gonna Come Photos/Weights: Jarrell Miller vs. Nick Guivas, Dela Torre, More Roach Feels Chavez Jr. - If in Shape - Could Test Gennady Golovkin Errol Spence: Vargas Will Need KO or Beat Brook's Ass To Win in UK Daniel Jacobs-Sergio Mora Rematch on The Horizon? Lucian Bute Reacts To Failed Drug Test, Will Open His B-Sample Bob Arum Offers To Stage Trump vs. Sanders Debate on PPV Cohen Feels Jarrell Miller is The Best Young American Heavyweight Deontay Wilder-Chris Arreola in Play For Summer Showdown Video: Joseph Diaz Discusses His Career, The Future, More Et Tu, Bute? Former Champ in Hot Water After Failing Drug Test Video: Sergio Mora Discusses Golovkin, Canelo, Jacobs, More Frank Warren: Not in a Million Years Does Eubank Jr. Beat Golovkin Phil Lo Greco-Joseph Elegele Tops PBC on Bounce, June 12th Lucian Bute Fails Drug Test, Positive For Ostarine in Jack Draw Gerald Washington: Deontay Wilder Title Fight is 'Very Possible' Abril, Foreman Broadway Boxing Double: Full Card Details Provodnikov's Promoter Not Surprised His Fighter Went To SHO Hedi Taouab, Legendary Matchmaker Passes Away at 68 Manny Pacquiao Declines Opportunity To Fight in Rio Olympics Photos: Wladimir Klitschko Putting in Work for Tyson Fury Rematch Photos: Tony Bellew, Ilunga Makabu Go Face To Face at Presser Roy Jones Jr. Backs Countryman Povetkin, Says He's Not To Blame Willie Limond Hopes To Land Ricky Burns Showdown Tony Bellew: I'll Show Makabu That I'm The Real Cruiserweight Nonito Donaire Headed To Jessie Magdaleno Clash Next? Shields: Canelo Running From Golovkin; Won't Face Jermall Charlo Eubank Jr: Canelo a Mexican Warrior? That Was Embarrassing! David Price Aims To Land Anthony Joshua Shot in The Fall Photos: Casimero, With Tyson and Jones at Ringside, Gets Revenge Di Rocco Warns Ricky Burns That Layoff Made Him 'More Hungry' Groves Plans To Get Martin Murray a Beer After Beating Him Kenny Lemos Inks Promotional Pact With Under Dawgs Boxing Chavez Jr. Advises Canelo To Demand '158' For Golovkin Bout Shakeup: John Riel Casimero Gives Flyweight a Fresh Spark
Advertisement

Latest Active Forum Threads
Advertisement
Advertisement