By Keith Idec
Mikey Garcia will have to wait a little longer for his opportunity to become a world champion in a fourth weight class.
According to multiple reports Wednesday, Garcia’s junior welterweight title fight against IBF champion Sergey Lipinets has been postponed because Lipinets has suffered a hand injury during training camp. Lipinets’ injury is considered minor, however, thus their 12-round, 140-pound title fight might not be delayed too long.
It was scheduled for February 10 at The Alamodome in San Antonio. Promoter Richard Schaefer told Yahoo! Sports’ Chris Mannix that the card will be postponed “several weeks” and is likely to still take place in San Antonio.
Whenever it is rescheduled, Showtime will televise Garcia-Lipinets as the main event of a doubleheader.
The broadcast also is supposed to include a 12-round rematch between Rances Barthelemy (26-0, 13 KOs) and Kiryl Relikh (21-2, 19 KOs) for the vacant WBA super lightweight title. Cuba’s Barthelemy beat Belarus’ Relikh in their first fight May 20, when he won a 12-round unanimous decision in Oxon Hill, Maryland.
The 30-year-old Garcia (37-0, 30 KOs), of Oxnard, California, is the WBC lightweight champion. After defeating Adrien Broner convincingly July 29 at Brooklyn’s Barclays Center, Garcia opted to remain at 140 pounds for a second straight fight to challenge the hard-hitting Lipinets (13-0, 10 KOs).
Kazakhstan’s Lipinets won the IBF junior welterweight title in his last fight. Lipinets, 28, captured the then-vacant IBF title by out-pointing durable Japanese contender Akihiro Kondo (29-7-1, 16 KOs) by unanimous decision in their 12-round fight November 4 at Barclays Center.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.