This Saturday night, Danny Garcia meets Robert Guerrero in the main event, live on Fox from the Staples Center in Los Angeles, CA. The co-feature pits hot prospect Sammy Vasquez against hardened-vet Aron Martinez. Can Guerrero rekindle his skill set to trouble Garcia? Can Garcia get a clear win? All these questions and more will be answered on Saturday.
Many of folks across the boxing landscape feel Garcia vs. Guerrero is yet another mismatch coming out of the Al Haymon stable. Perception becomes a reality in this social media world that we live in causing this matchup to fall by the waste side from lack of buzz on fight week. But make no mistake about it this is a real fight, not just an afterthought to get to Amir Khan.
Danny Garcia made his name known in the underdog role not once but twice at the junior welterweight division. In the summer of 2012, Amir Khan needed an opponent after Lamont Peterson was popped for a testosterone pill. In walks Danny Garcia as a replacement for Peterson but on that July night in Las Vegas Garcia refuse to behave like just another opponent. Khan got off to a super fast start in the first two and half rounds until Garcia landed his major weapon, a left hook. Khan stumbled his way around the rind for a round or two but ultimately was stopped in the 4th.
Lucas ‘The Machine’ Matthysse positioned himself on a short list to face Floyd Mayweather. The stage was set for Matthysse to make his mark as a co-feature to the Mayweather vs. Canelo PPV. Standing in his way was none other than Danny Garcia. The Philadelphia native, like he often does, started slow against Matthysse. After several hard punches landed by Lucas, one causing Garcia’s mouthpiece to launch off the top rope, Danny bit down and began to breakdown ‘The Machine’. He would go on to score a knockdown helping him to edge out a hard-earned victory.
Since late 2013 though, Garcia’s career has been stuck in neutral. His battles with Mauricio Herrera and Lamont Peterson are seen as gift victories and the blatant mismatch with Rod Salka only threw gasoline on the fire of hate. Garcia outgrew the 140 pound division and this Saturday should give us a legit measuring stick of where he fits in at welterweight.
Robert Guerrero looked shopworn in his last outing versus Aron Martinez. Adding up the amount of wars he’s participated in over the last few years, it may equate to a mismatch facing the much fresher Danny Garcia. As it stands, ‘The Ghost’ is past his prime, that doesn’t mean he is a pushover. Guerrero took Keith Thurman’s best punches and still was able to rage-forward in the championship rounds.
The key for Guerrero will be picking the correct spots to be aggressive. If Robert digs deep into his skills archive he will find a solid jab. Once he dusts off that weapon, he’ll find that using his full skill set could win him this fight. Guerrero needs to bring back the fundamentals that got him this far. Using a jab and pivot technique while attacking in spots will be the remedy. He may not be as crafty or clever as Mauricio Herrera. But subtle lateral movement mixed with activity just may do the trick against Garcia.
Garcia will be on the attack from the first bell no doubt about it. The question is how effective will he be cutting the ring off? Aggression with purpose is needed at this level something Danny had issues with against Peterson and Herrera. Garcia’s weight problems are well documented but can’t be used as an excuse at welterweight.
If the Ghost can make it a fight on the inside and outside he will likely prove the doubters wrong. If Garcia can’t cut the distance effectively he could be out of range to land his power punches. This scribe sees a somewhat even matchup at the midway point. Someone will begin to separate themselves on the scorecards in the last four rounds. In a spirited contest that’s stylistic matched well, Garcia’s freshness and star power plays a big enough role down the stretch to hammer out a win.
For those gambling degenerates out their (I mean that with respect) looking to take out a flyer, you may want to engage this one with Guerrero on the books as a 5 to 1 live underdog.
My official prediction is Danny Garcia by majority decision.
The co-feature scrap has barnburner written all over it, when the unbeaten prospect Sammy Vasquez lays it on the line versus Aron Martinez. This scribe predicts the co-headliner will out shine the other two bouts on the card and become one of the best fights in the first quarter of 2016. Vasquez is a very skillful fighter who is not afraid to mix it up which fits rights in line with his opponent. Martinez will stop at nothing to get inside as he showed in his last two fights. He pushed Guerrero to the brink in June and pulled a major upset over a slickster in Devon Alexander. Martinez is worth a shot as a 3-4 to 1 underdog. Aron will have plenty of moments but in the end will come up just short against Sammy.
My official prediction is Sammy Vasquez by split-decision.
Dominic Breazeale vs. Amir Mansour will lead off the Fox telecast. For Breazeale, 2015 was difficult year as he climbed the prospect ranks engaging in a tough fight the last time out against Fred Kassi. Mansour will be a handful because of the pressure he will bring to Dominic. Amir struggled to maintain his intensity in a fall bout versus Gerald Washington. Mansour will be a great test to see if Breazeale is a true heavyweight contender.
My official prediction is Amir Mansour by KO or TKO
Written by Chris Carlson Host of Rope-A-Dope-Radio blogtalkradio.com/ropeadoperadio Follow on Twitter @RopeADopeRadio