Danny Garcia has fully embraced the concept of starting over—right down to the means in which he continues to train for arguably the toughest fight of his 13-year pro career.
A chiseled physique complete with an entrenched six-pack has the former two-division champion from Philadelphia looking fight night ready nearly two weeks out from his challenge of unbeaten, unified titlist Errol Spence Jr. (26-0, 21KOs). Their bout takes place December 5, live on Fox Sports Pay-Per-View from AT&T Stadium, home of the NFL’s Dallas Cowboys in Arlington, Texas, near Spence’s Desoto hometown.
The visiting challenger disagrees with the notion that it’s the biggest fight of his career, though certainly no reason why he can’t train accordingly, even through the Thanksgiving holiday.
“I’m feeling good,” Garcia (36-2, 21KOs) told Premier Boxing Champions (PBC) host Ray Flores during a virtual media workout held Monday in his Philly gym. “My body is looking like I’m 21 again. Like I’m going through puberty.
“I’m training hard so I can eat. No turkey because that makes me sleepy. Maybe some chicken, though.”
The 32-year old boxer is a long way from awkward adolescence but still a vital part of the current welterweight division which remains stacked with elite-level talent. At the top of the list according to most experts in Garcia's next opponent in Spence, who makes his first defense as a unified titlist and fourth overall of at least one major welterweight belt.
For Garcia, it’s a shot at putting a title back around his waist for the first time since suffering a narrow split decision defeat to Keith Thurman in their March 2017 unification clash at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. The setback marked his first career defeat after going 7-0 in prior title fights. He is just 3-1 since then, the lone loss coming in a competitive unanimous decision in favor of Shawn Porter in their September 2018 vacant title fight.
Garcia is just 1-2 in welterweight title fights, not quite capturing the same energy he carried as the king of the junior welterweight division. Efforts to change his run of luck at the top level will come against one of the very best pound-for-pound boxers in the world today. Even with Spence entering his first fight since suffering injuries in a horrific car crash last October, the odds are still against García prevailing in this fight.
Not that he ever needs an excuse to go full throttle in training camp, but that aspect certainly contributes to the cause.
“When I’m not the underdog, I don’t feel right,” insists Garcia. “I’m right where I want to be… this is definitely the energy I like. It’s the chip I like to have on my shoulder. It’s like I’m proving myself all over again.
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox