Mikey Garcia feels pretty bad about Errol Spence Jr. suffering an eye injury and losing out on a massive fight against Manny Pacquiao on August 21st.
The four-division world champion Mikey says there’s not nearly as much interest in a fight between Pacquiao and replacement opponent Yordenis Ugas for that date, even though the Cuban fighter holds the WBA welterweight title.
Casual boxing fans don’t know who Ugas is, and they don’t care that he’s a world champion. What’s important to them is that they’re not getting the fight they wanted to see with Pacquiao and Spence.
Being asked to pay the same $74.99 to watch Pacquiao fight a replacement opponent, it’s off-putting.
Premier Boxing Champions have a deep enough stable to where they cut have called Keith Thurman up and had him step forward to replace Spence as Pacquiao’s opponent, and there would be far less grumbling from fans.
Mikey: Fans not as excited about Pacquiao – Ugas
“That’s f*** up, that’s sad. He was forced to pull out of the fight, and that sucks, especially when it’s only a week away from the fight,” said Mikey Garcia to Fighthype on Errol Spence pulling out of his August 21st fight with Pacquiao.
“That’s terrible. He had his camp going and was training and then not be able to fight. That sucks for Errol. Manny obviously was ready for the fight, so they could salvage the show and salvage the fight.
He’s fighting Yorgenis Ugas now. So it’s a fight too. It’s not an easy fight. It’s a good match-up, but not as big of a show with marketing and branding.
“Not as many people excited about that as they were for Errol, but still a good fight,” Mikey said.
It’s an understatement by Mikey that fans aren’t excited about Pacquiao vs. Ugas. At this point, boxing fans are still talking more about Pacquiao-Spence than they are Pacquiao vs. Ugas, and that’s a bad sign.
It would have been a good idea for PBC and FOX to drop the PPV price from $74.99 to $65 because Spence is no longer fighting. Why should boxing fans pay the same price for what clearly is a lesser fight between Pacquiao and Ugas?
Even $65 would be pushing it. Pacquiao is famous, but he still needs to be matched against opposition that boxing fans want to see him fighting.
There’s no demand for a fight between Manny and Ugas. You can argue there are at least seven fighters in the 147-lb & 140-lb divisions that fans would prefer to see Pacquiao fighting rather than Ugas. They are as follows:
- Keith Thurman
- Shawn Porter
- Terence Crawford
- Vergil Ortiz Jr
- Jaron Ennis
- Danny Garcia
- Gervonta Davis
- Josh Taylor
- Jose Ramirez
- Regis Prograis
Pacquiao has 2 fights left before retiring
“I’ve heard from different people that he was thinking of having two fights this year and then retires,” said Mikey when asked how many fights Pacquiao has left before he retires.
“It all changes depending on one fight’s outcome. If someone gets hurt or knocked out or something like that, he [Pacquiao] might decide to retire at that point.
“Win or lose doesn’t matter. If your body takes serious punishment and is hurt, that can all change. Who knows if he’s going to be able to squeeze in another fight before the end of the year.
“He might not. If he fights and everything goes well, and he wins and doesn’t get hurt, not cut or anything like that, he might be able to squeeze in another fight before the end of the year. But if it’s a tough fight and he’s cut, he may not have time to do so,” said Mikey.
If Pacquiao has only two more fights remaining before he retires, that puts more pressure on Mikey to try and campaign for his second fight this year.
It’ll be surprising if Pacquiao doesn’t come out of the Ugas fight too dinged up to return for a second match this year. Ugas is just as tough a fright for Manny as his match against Keith Thurman two years ago, and he was black & blue after that one.
As long as Pacquiao doesn’t get cut up or beaten up, Mikey has got a chance to be in the second fight this year. The problem is that Mikey will have to get back in the ring soon because there’s no point in him pushing for a fight with Manny this year if his fight with Regis Prograis takes place in November.