Exhibition: Ryan Garcia vs. Manny Pacquiao

By Tim Compton - 01/25/2021 - Comments

There’s a lot less interest in the Manny Pacquiao vs. Ryan Garcia fight today after it was revealed their mega-fight isn’t going to be a real fight at all; it’s being planned a simple exhibition match.

Now that the cat is out of the bag about the Pacquiao-Garcia match being an exhibition, it would have been better if Ryan had stuck with his previous plans on facing Gervonta Davis. At least that would be a real fight.

The fight or whatever you want to call it is still being finalized between the two popular stars.

Steve Kim broke the news earlier today about the Garcia-Pacquiao fight being an exhibition match.

However, Gervonta ‘Tank Davis already knew the match’s status as Sunday because he was already commenting.

Ryan has burned his bridge with Tank Davis

As far as Tank goes, he says he’s lost interest in facing Ryan Garcia now.

“Ryan Garcia is about to do an exhibition with Manny Pacquiao,” said Tank Davis on Twitter. “I definitely don’t want the fight no more. I’m on to the next.”

Exhibition: Ryan Garcia vs. Manny Pacquiao

We’re still waiting to find out how much the Pacquiao-Garcia fight will go for on pay-per-view. Fans will need to brace themselves if they’re asked to pay $80 to watch a nice exhibition.

Hopefully, the action is better than what we saw from the recent Mike Tyson vs. Roy Jones Jr exhibition, as that match looked more like a movie than a real fight.

The engagement rules for the Pacquiao (62-7-2, 39 KOs) vs. Garcia (21-0, 18 KOs) fight are still being hashed out, according to Manny Pacquiao Promotions president Sean Gibbons.

He said this earlier today:

“The rules of engagement have not been decided yet!!

No doubt, Gibbons has been reading overall negative feedback from fans on social media after learning that the Pacquiao-Garcia fight would be an exhibition.

The fans are getting burned out on the subject of exhibition matches and non-competitive celebrity-level fights.

The 22-year-old Ryan’s age, lack of experience, and his rail-thin body likely had a lot to do with the decision to make it an exhibition match with Pacquiao.

Exhibition: Ryan Garcia vs. Manny Pacquiao

If this were a real fight, there would be too much of a chance for Ryan to get badly knocked out and his career potentially obliterated.

For the fans that witnessed the light-hitting Luke Campbell bowl, Ryan, over in the second round of their fight earlier this month on January 2nd, they understand why his fight with Pacquiao has made an exhibition.

It likely wouldn’t be remotely competitive if Ryan were to fight Pacquiao (62-7-2, 39 KOs) for real. Ryan doesn’t possess the skills, chin, or the size to be facing a legend like Pacquiao.

It sounds bad, I know, that Ryan and Pacquiao an exhibition, but fans were going to get a horrible fight anyway. Pacquiao had been planning on facing Conor McGregor next until he got knocked out by Justin Poirier last Saturday night at UFC 257.

If McGregor had won that fight, he and Pacquiao would be fighting next. So in a way, boxing fans are getting a slightly better fight between Manny and the 22-year-old King Ryan.

Unfortunately, the Pacquiao vs. Ryan exhibition match will likely resemble slow-motion sparring rather than a real honest to goodness fight.

Exhibition: Ryan Garcia vs. Manny Pacquiao

With all the fawning that Ryan will likely be doing with Pacquiao in the lead up to the exhibition match, Manny might not hit hard the heart to hit him with anything solid.

If Ryan is holding back because he doesn’t want to hurt his hero Pacquiao, fans will be subjected to a real face. It might be similar to the dull Canelo Alvarez vs. Sergey Kovalev fight a couple of years ago. That fight looked really strange.

“OK, I’m told that in regards to Pacquiao-Ryan Garcia, nothing is finalized. The plan is for this bout to be an exhibition. Also, it would take place at THE ONE on Sunset Blvd…. #boxing,” said Steve Kim on social media.

What likely factored into the decision to make the Pacquiao – Garcia fight an exhibition were several things. Pacquiao can’t afford a loss right now if he wants to get a payday fight against Errol Spence Jr, Terence Crawford, Danny Garcia, Shawn Porter, or Keth Thurman.

Ryan can’t afford a lot because he’s being groomed a the next Oscar De La Hoya ‘Golden Boy’ type star. These possible other reasons why Ryan is facing Pacquiao in an exhibition:

  • Lack of size
  • Too light
  • Lack of experience
  • Poor defense
  • Weak chin
  • Ryan’s recent shaky performance

When you get two fighters like Pacquiao and Ryan Garcia protecting their future earning power, an exhibition match is what you get.

Exhibition: Ryan Garcia vs. Manny Pacquiao

Boxing fans will need to decide whether it’s worth paying the cost to see Ryan and Pacquiao spar for eight to ten rounds in their exhibition match or if they should save their money on other things.

“Alright, if Pac-Garcia is going to be an exhibition, just scrap it,” said Steve Kim. “Let’s go back to ‘the Pac Man’ vs. Conor McGregor, sorry, but I need some legitimacy to these match-ups.

“Not a fan of Pacquiao-Garcia being an exhibition. But hey, at least the WBA belt wont be on the line, right?!?! #boxing.”

Fans would have been more willing to give Ryan Garcia a pass to choose not to fight Gervnta Davis if his fight against Pacquiao was a real one and not an exhibition. But now that fans know what they’re getting with the Pacquiao vs. Ryan match, they’ll need to decide if it’s worth it to pay to watch sparring.

Boxing fans will have to get used to seeing exhibition matches because it’s going to get worse before it gets better. You can expect older and older fighters coming out of retirement in search of a payday against other older fighters.

What’s bad about that is the product will be poor, and those fights will give casual boxing fans the impression that the sport is filled with old-timers.

Imagine if the NFL had to compete with 50-year-old players coming back, forming teams, and playing games that were given a huge amount of attention. It would not be good for the sport.


Last Updated on 01/26/2021