On February 10, three-division world champion Mikey Garcia will aim to capture a belt in his fourth division, when he takes on IBF junior welterweight world champion Sergey Lipinets at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas.
Garcia (37-0, 30 KOs), who still holds the WBC lightweight title that he won in January with a knockout of Dejan Zlaticanin , had moved up to 140-pounds back in July when he dominated four-division champion Adrien Broner over twelve rounds.
After waiting for quite a while to secure his shot, Lipinets (13-0, 10 KOs) became a world champion last month with a tough unanimous decision over Akihiro Kondo to capture the vacant IBF crown.
Lipinets is trained by veteran coach and former world champion Buddy McGirt.
He plans to give Lipinets the training camp of his career, to ensure his boxer is completely ready for his first elite-level opponent. Garcia is widely regarded as one of the best pound-for-pound fighters in the world.
"We will be prepared for any and every thing. This way, when fight night comes, we'll have an answer for everything. The key is that we just have to be on point from the opening bell to the end. There's no way around it," McGirt said.
"We're going to cover everything in training camp. You have to have every option available to you on fight night. This way, you're never surprised in the ring. Sergey won't go in there swinging to get a knockout, he's going to be disciplined and focus on getting the victory.
Some believe Lipinets might be biting off a little more than he chew at this stage of his career, but McGirt disagrees with that viewpoint.
"I believe that Sergey is on a mission. I know Mikey Garcia is on a mission too, and I respect that. I respect that these two men are fighting each other. Champions do what Sergey is doing, and that's fighting the best," McGirt said.