Ryan Garcia powered through a test against Javier Fortuna tonight on DAZN, but the biggest takeaway is probably that Garcia says he will not fight at 135 lbs again — this fight was at a full 140 — which would seem to be yet another issue in making a fight with Gervonta Davis.
“I felt way better (fighting at 140),” he told Chris Mannix in the ring. “I’m not going back down to 135 for nothing, but I will fight Tank next, if Tank wants that at 140.
“That’s gonna give me the respect I deserve. I’m never afraid, I have a spirit of competition in me, and you’re gonna see that come out when I fight Tank and whoop his ass.”
Davis has fought four times over 130 lbs in his career, three times at 135 and once at 140, his 2021 win over Mario Barrios. But it was clear in that fight that he’s sincerely pushing it at 140, too, and it’s even been clear that at 135, he’s not quite the explosive talent he was at 130.
Asking Davis to come up to 140 makes this an even harder fight to get done than it already was, considering you have rival platforms in Showtime and DAZN, rival companies in Golden Boy and Premier Boxing Champions, and an actual personal rivalry between key promotional figures Floyd Mayweather and Oscar De La Hoya.
But we’ll see what happens with that later. For tonight, Garcia (23-0, 19 KO) looked sharp, strong, fast, and just way too big and too much for Fortuna (37-4-1, 26 KO), who was dropped three times and took the 10-count early in the sixth round.
“I know that I performed well for myself, and I know that I was crisp, I was sharp. I stayed in my truth. I know how good of a fighter I am, I just had to put it all together,” he said.
“He hit hard,” Garcia admitted of Fortuna. “He has a hard fist. But I told you, when I face harder punchers, I box better.”
If the fight with Davis predictably does not happen, the obvious next step for Garcia would have been JoJo Diaz Jr, who beat Fortuna last year. But with Garcia saying he won’t go back down to 135, the game is changing on his potential next opponents.
Like Davis, Diaz really has no business fighting at 140. Golden Boy doesn’t have much more at 140 than they do at 135, either, so it’s anyone’s guess what will come next for Garcia if he doesn’t change his mind about the weight. And realistically, the fact is he may have simply out-grown making 135, which is fair enough; he was always a big lightweight, and he’s getting older. It gets harder to make a weight year after year for most fighters.