Regis Prograis reacted succinctly and understandably Saturday night to Mikey Garcia’s stunning loss to Sandor Martin.
Prograis issued a one-word Tweet, “F---!!!!!,’ immediately after Martin was announced as a majority-decision winner over Garcia in their 10-round welterweight fight at Chukchansi Park in Fresno, California. Garcia was consistently listed as a 20-1 favorite to beat the Spanish southpaw in what was supposed to be a tune-up fight for the four-division champion.
Prograis, a former WBA “super” 140-pound champion, had hoped to fight Garcia at some point within the first half of 2022. Garcia’s shocking loss to Martin might instead lead the Oxnard, California, native into an immediate rematch with him.
New Orleans’ Prograis sensed as a lethargic Garcia struggled Saturday night that the 33-year-old Garcia wouldn’t have wanted to fight him even if he had overcome the previously unknown Martin (39-2, 13 KOs).
“Mikey not gonna fight me,” Prograis stated in a Tweet sent out during the Garcia-Martin match. “That ship is sailing away round by round.”
Promoter Eddie Hearn expressed optimism about revisiting Prograis-Garcia negotiations before Martin upset Garcia. Hearn told DAZN’s Chris Mannix during the most recent episode of his podcast on The Volume that, unlike this year, DAZN’s 2022 budget would allow for a Prograis-Garcia fight.
“As you, you know, get a clean piece of paper for 2022,” Hearn explained, “that’s a fight that sits right at the forefront of that schedule and says that’s a really powerful fight to kick off 2022.”
Money, according to Hearn, was what prevented Prograis-Garcia from materializing late this year. There was speculation during the summer that Prograis (26-1, 22 KOs) and Garcia (40-2, 30 KOs) would meet September 18 in a DAZN main event.
“Just money, really,” Hearn said as to why Prograis-Garcia didn’t happen. “That was the main thing. I mean, both guys wanted quite a lot of money for that fight. I’m not saying it’s not worth it. But at the time, within the schedule, it wasn’t there to be made. Especially with Ryan [Garcia] and Devin [Haney] and Teofimo [Lopez] in the wings. So, that’s the main reason why that fight couldn’t be made.”
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.