Undefeated three-division world champion Mikey Garcia and unbeaten IBF Junior Welterweight World Champion Sergey Lipinets were face to face for the second straight day Tuesday at a press conference in San Antonio to discuss their main event showdown taking place Saturday, Feb. 10 live on SHOWTIME (10:15 p.m. ET/PT). The matchup of top-5 ranked junior welterweights is presented by Premier Boxing Champions at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas.
(Photo credit: Esther Lin/SHOWTIME)
SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING coverage will also feature two-division world champion Rances Barthelemy in a rematch against Kiryl Relikh for the vacant WBA 140-pound world title.
Tickets for the event, which is promoted by Ringstar Sports and TGB Promotions, are priced at $250, $150, $75, $50 and $20. Tickets are on-sale now and available at Ticketmaster.com.
Here is what the press conference participants had to say Tuesday from Ruth’s Chris Steak House Grand Hyatt in San Antonio:
“We’re expecting a tough competitive fight. Lipinets is a fighter who is always dangerous. He has power in both hands and he’s not afraid to let his hands go. He’s also willing to get hit, so that he can hit you back. That’s what makes him dangerous.
“This opportunity to win a title in a fourth division was too great to pass on. It’s hard to secure fights like this. I’m happy everything came together so we can give the fans a great show.
“Last year was a great year for my return. It started with a world title win for a third division title and then I had the big victory over Adrien Broner in the summer. I’m looking for even bigger things in 2018 and this last year really paved the path for that.
“Winning a fourth title was the big draw for me in making this fight happen. To make history like that is something that really motivates me. I know that I have a lot more to accomplish in the sport, but this is a great start. This is the direction I want to go in.
“There’s a lot of talent and history in boxing in San Antonio. My brother has a gym here and we have a lot of fighters we train with from the area. Even though I’ve never fought here, I’ve gotten a lot of support from the community. When we were looking at venues for the fight, this was something I was excited to do.
“I have fought in different regions of Texas and always received a lot of love, but I had never been able to fight in San Antonio. We decided to bring the fight here to give something back to the state of Texas. There’s no city better to host it than San Antonio.”
“The fans in San Antonio can expect drama. It’s going to be a show. It’s going to have big punches, knockdowns and everything you’d want to see in a fight.
“This is the biggest challenge that I’ve had in my career. Mikey is a big star, but I’m very competitive and I want to show the world what I can do.
“My spirit cannot be matched by any fighter, but I also have the speed and strength to win. I will show my devastating power on February 10.
“Mikey is a very good chess player. People underestimate his ability to think in the ring. So I can’t just go in there with a style that someone else has used against him. We’re going to work hard on the best game plan for what I can do.
“This is going to be a difficult fight. I’m aiming to get a win any way that I can. I can’t say what it is going to look like, but I will be ready for anything in the ring.
“I’m coming to win. I want to be in the position that Mikey has reached in this sport. I’ve worked hard to get to this moment and I’m going to give it my all to take advantage.
“If I didn’t think I was ready for this fight then I wouldn’t have taken it. We have a plan and we’ll use all the experience I’ve gained from my career to execute it.”
RICHARD SCHAEFER, Chairman & CEO of Ringstar Sports
“Boxing is going into 2018 with huge momentum and starting out with big events like this. You have two undefeated champions getting in the ring to fight each other. These kind of fights are going to continue to elevate the sport to great heights.
“This was an easy fight to make because you have two fighters who want to measure themselves against the best. This is a fight that got done quickly. Neither fighter had to be convinced. Both guys feel they can win and are going into the fight with an attitude of an undefeated fighter.
“Neither one of these guys have any thought that they might lose. They are 100 percent convinced that they are going to walk out of there with their hand raised. That’s what’s going to make this a great matchup.”