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Showtime tries to line up Keith Thurman-Danny Garcia for early 2017

Stephen Espinoza says he'd like to stage a welterweight title unification between Keith Thurman and Danny Garcia in the first quarter of 2017.

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It seems like an eternity away but Showtime's Stephen Espinoza is looking to line up a compelling title unification fight between WBA titleholder Keith Thurman and WBC titlist Danny Garcia early next year. As Espinoza relays to, both fighters want to make the fight happen and it shouldn't be difficult to do since they're both aligned with powerful manager Al Haymon.

"More than anything, Danny and Keith are trying to make that fight happen," Espinoza told The Ring. "Really, the key to making a fight quickly is when both of them want the fight and they're both focused on it. I think it sort of feels like the natural fight to happen as quickly as possible."

Keith Thurman didn't take long to call out Danny Garcia after besting Shawn Porter in a grueling affair, but he's expected to sit out for the rest of the year as he recovers from cuts suffered in the Porter fight.

"With the cut and the recovery, he's looking to go early next year," Espinoza said of Thurman. "I don't think (he'll fight in 2016). Ultimately it's Keith's decision but I certainly wouldn't blame him at all after a tough 12 rounds and stitches if he came back in the first quarter of next year."

Should the fight take place as hoped, it will be one of the better match-ups to take place in the sport, especially in a fairly crowded welterweight division. But one potential issue here is that Thurman has already been ordered to face his WBA mandatory challenger in David Avanesyan.

Thurman and Avanesyan had 30 days from July 14th to come to terms on the fight otherwise it will be ordered to purse bid. So while there's still some time to hash out an official agreement between them, right now it's uncertain whether Thurman would face Avanesyan before taking on Garcia, or if both sides will work out a step-aside deal.

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