Mikey Garcia thinks Errol Spence’s surgically-repaired left eye is the wild card in the latter’s upcoming bout against Yordenis Ugas.
Although it has not been formally announced yet, Spence and Ugas are scheduled to face each other in the spring in a welterweight unification bout that will put up for grabs Spence’s WBC/IBF titles and Ugas’ WBA belt. Spence recently posted on social media that the fight will take place in April.
Garcia, who fought Spence in 2019, losing a wide decision, thinks the Cuban Ugas is more than capable of producing an upset, especially considering the fact that his opponent underwent surgery last summer for a detached retina. Spence reportedly sustained the injury in sparring, but it was only discovered during an eye exam just two weeks out from his highly-anticipated pay-per-view bout against Manny Pacquiao on Aug. 21. Spence (27-0, 21 KOs) pulled out of the fight, paving the way for Ugas (27-4, 12 KOs) to fill-in on 11-days notice and eventually defeat the Filipino legend by unanimous decision.
“That’s a tough one for Spence, coming off eye surgery and all that,” Garcia told FightHype.com. “You don’t know how he’ll react, how his body will react from actual fighting. That’s dangerous for him, I don’t know.”
The eye injury is the second caveat that has come up for Spence in recent years. The Desoto, Texas native was involved in a harrowing, life-threatening car accident in 2019, just weeks after his title-unifying win over Shawn Porter. When Spence eventually returned to the ring, he proved he had not really lost a step, defeating longtime top welterweight contender Danny Garcia (36-3, 21 KOs) by sound unanimous decision.
Spence will have to answer his critics yet again.
Despite his misgivings about Spence’s physical condition, Garcia (40-2, 30 KOs) says he is impressed by the southpaw’s desire to jump into a risky fight.
“If he gets hit, I don’t know, it could cause serious injury,” Garcia said. “That’s a tough fight in a return fight after a surgery like that, for Spence. Big props to him for taking fights like that. That’s a dangerous fight.
“Stylistically, I think Spence is a better fighter but Ugas is no pushover. Big size, strength, he’s strong, he’s a world champ for a reason. He fought really good against [Shawn] Porter, some thought he might have won, and then he beats Manny Pacquiao. Like I said he’s big and strong, too. It’s not an easy fight. It’s a tough one. I can’t even tell you who’s going to win.”
“He might actually fight a little different, fight more cautious, based on the injury,” Garcia continued. “Maybe he feels fine, but he wants to be more cautious about it, so he might fight different than what he’s usually used to. So that could play a factor into the fight. We’ll see. It’s a good fight, man.”
Garcia is coming off a stunning upset to Spain’s Sandor Martin in October.