With Ryan Garcia (18-0, 15 KOs) set to take on Avery Sparrow (10-1, 3 KOs) in a 10-round lightweight contest tomorrow night in Carson, California, the two fighters took to the podium to discuss their matchup.
Sparrow, 25, was up first and made it clear that he’s fully confident he’s about to derail that Garcia hype train.
“This opportunity, I’m gonna take full advantage of it,” Sparrow would say. “Ryan Garcia, he’s a talented young fighter, but me personally, I feel like he’s yet to be in tough, yet to be proven. Like De La Hoya said, I fought in 2017 — which is some years ago — Jose Lopez and defeat him, and that was Ryan’s last opponent, who’s been stopped twice after that, has been beaten by me, so I mean he’s getting guys that I already beat.
“He hasn’t really been put in tough. So when [my trainer] says it’s a tough fight, [he’s] always gonna say it’s a tough fight because, you know what I mean, he wants to make sure everything is good and I’m staying focused, but to me I don’t really see that as a tough fight. He comes in, he only has one plan — to knock everybody out. When he went the distance with Carlos Morales and Jayson Velez he had a tough time. He really likes to hold. He doesn’t have no inside game.
“So it’s a lot of things that Ryan has to prove. It’s not a lot of things that I have to prove. I’ve been in tough, I been on the B-side a lot of times, I fought heavier guys, I’ve been hurt in fights, I got up. I went the distance an ample amount of times, so everything is out there for me. I’m saying, we know I’m built pelts-tough. But the first 15-16 fights, when you’re signed with an elite promotional company are favored for you to win. So this fight right here is the opportunity for Ryan Garcia to show if he really is who he says he is. And I’m the guy. If he beats me, then you guys can be sure that Ryan Garcia is gonna be on to do big things.
“But after I beat him he’s a good fighter, he still has time to grow, he still has time to become a world champion, he still has time to do a lot of things. But I just really believe that he bit off more than he can chew and come this weekend on Saturday, the world’s gonna see that Ryan Garcia is over with. The Instagram and all the fame and all that — it doesn’t win fights...Ryan Garcia has a lot to prove, and he’s gonna have to prove it because I’m coming to fight.”
Garcia would then get his turn to speak his piece and offered these thoughts:
“This Saturday I just plan to show all my improvements in the ring. I wanna make something clear, I don’t rehydrate to a middleweight, I actually always clock in at 142 every time I rehydrate so I don’t wanna hear no excuses.
“[Sparrow] claims that he has a lot of experience, I mean, he has 11 fights. I mean, I don’t know how much experience you could have with that. I was in the amateurs maybe even longer than him so, you know, I have just as much experience and I’ve been working in the gym to get better each and every time, and every camp I just strive to get better and better everyday.
“I know there’s a lot of pressure on me, a lot of hype, and I know that a lot of things that people say about me — the only thing I look to do is become the best fighter I can be. So, a lot of people like to focus on my Instagram, I don’t know why. Everybody talks about it but you don’t hear my trying to boast about it, everybody just talks about it. I just know that it connects me to my fans and why wouldn’t I want to connect to the people that support me? So this Saturday I just come to get my respect and respect is earned, not given. So I know he’s gonna bring all he got...So this Saturday, stay tuned, it’s gonna be a good one.”