Ryan Garcia says he wanted to give the fans an entertaining knockout last Saturday night but his opponent Emmanuel Tagoe was too focused on surviving after getting clipped early in their headliner at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas.
The 23-year-old King Ry was forced to go the full 12 round distance for the first time in his career, but clearly dominated every round of the fight. The scores were 119-108, 118-109, and 119-108.
The wildness that Ryan (22-0, 18 KOs) showed in the fight was a reminder to fans that he’s still an unfinished product that needs a lot of work before he’s ready for the big names like Gervonta ‘Tank’ Davis.
It would be in Golden Boy Promotion’s best interest for them not to pick another crafty defensive artist for Ryan’s next fight this year because he lacks the offensive skills needed to break down and stop those guys of fighters.
He’s going to need a jab to deal with the defensive fighter because they’re going to be running, and not letting Ryan get close enough to land his big left hook.
That’s Ryan’s only true weapon for scoring knockouts. Thus far, he’s not shown the ability to KO his opponents when hitting them with his right hand.
Tagoe went into survival mode early
“I don’t like to win, I like to destroy. That’s my whole intention,” said Ryan Garcia last Saturday night after laboring to a boring 12 round decision over Emmanuel Tagoe.
“I want to knock people out, that’s just what I want. I know other people like to just get the W, but I really wanted to knock him out,” Ryan said voicing his frustration in facing to get the stoppage of Tagoe.
“But he was crafty and I learned a lot. If I didn’t look for it, I probably would have got it. I’m learning.
“The moment he did, he got check hooked pretty hard,” said Ryan when asked about what went through his mind when Tagoe engaged with him in the early rounds.
“He knew that if he kept doing that, he would have been caught with something bad. I had to track him down, and cut the ring off. I’m a natural boring counter puncher.
“I’m not a go-at-em, pressure fighter, but I have to make the adjustment in the ring. If he’s not going to engage me, it’s going to be a boring fight for the whole fans, and I’m not going to do that.
“I was trying to knock him out, I was giving everything I had and I couldn’t do it. In the second round, once I caught him with that shot, he wanted no more of the smoke.
“He was like, ‘I’m going to move around this whole ring. There’s no way I’m going to get caught again, and he accomplished what he didn’t want to happen, which was to get knocked out.
“But he gave me a lot of respect after the fight. He said, ‘I know myself, nobody is beating you. I’m crafty, I move, I know what I can do, but you took everything away from me,'” Ryan said.
Ryan injured his right hand
“It’s good, I’m happy, but you know me, I love to give somebody amazing things,” Ryan continued. “I did crack him in the tenth round with that nice right hand.
“I thought that was going to end it, but it obviously didn’t. It’s okay. 12 rounds, it was the first time I went 12 rounds, and I’m happy with it.
“I tweaked it a little bit, a little bruise,” said Ryan about him injuring his right hand during the Tagoe fight. “Everyone gets an injured hand sometimes.
“It felt good. I thought that I should have had better timing on it. That’s what I felt was off with the eight oz gloves. It’s different when you use 14 oz gloves.
“I felt myself coming up short a lot instead of creeping up on him a little bit better with it. But I think as the next fight goes on, it’ll get better.
“It was a year and a half, and I’m only going to get better. There’s no way I can get worse. I think it was more getting back in the ring after a year and a half,” said Ryan.
Garcia wants to be less eager
“The work that I’m doing with Joe [Goosen] is going to come naturally,” said Ryan. “I don’t need to force anything. I was trying my best to get him out of there. I knew I was more skilled than him.
“He couldn’t really do anything with me. I was winning every round, but my whole intention was how do I get him out of there? The dude is moving, he’s holding me every chance he gets.
“I was hitting him with some hellacious shots, I was hitting him with some big ones. But that’s what happens, you can’t knock everybody out.
“It was a good experience. I went 12 rounds for the first time. It’s not even a championship fight and I still went 12 rounds, so it was good. I did, he was hurt,” said Ryan when reminded that he had hurt Tagoe in the second round when he dropped him.
“I’ve got to control my eagerness. When I get somebody hurt, I’m bloodthirsty and I just go for it. I should have taken my time, set him up for a big one. Then I would have gotten him out of there, but that’s going to come in time, I’m still young.
“I could have moved my hands a little bit more and I could’ve gotten him out as well. In the second round, I thought I could get him out of there.
“In some of the rounds, I was pressing him, and he kept lounging over me like he was lazy. I thought I was going to hit him with a good one, but he was taking a lot of good shots. He really did not want to get knocked out.
“As I said in the ring. In the past, I called a lot of people out, but it kind of backfired on me. A lot of people when it didn’t happen, kind of judged me for it,” Garcia said.
Ryan to fight 3 times in 2022
“I’m going to take the more mature approach and see what happens,” said Ryan. “I just want to fight two more times this year, get active. I’m 23-years-old, and I have a lot in me. I’m going to become a better fighter.
“I’ve got everything. I’ve got speed, I’ve got power. I can really do something in this sport. I’m going to get active and get way better.
“San Antonio showed so much love for me. It’s crazy. After a year and a half of layoff, the whole place was erupting and they all showed love. It was a blessing. After everything that I went through, it’s really a blessing,” said Ryan.