Lineal 140lb champion, Danny “Swift” Garcia should probably be renamed “Gift” Garcia this morning, after some favourable scorecards last night in New York led to the Philly native remaining undefeated after his 143lb catch weight fight against Lamont Peterson.
Its not an exaggeration to say that Peterson, who has been stripped of his IBF title because of the loss, will be feeling a little hard done by today as the majority decision that went against him is being viewed by many as unjust. One has to say the scores of 115-113 (twice) and a 114-114 draw are not the fairest reflection of a fight that this writer thought Peterson deserved by at least a couple of rounds.
At the end of an all action final round, the face of Garcia didn’t look to me like a man who believed he had done enough. It is fair to say that Danny nicked most of the close early rounds, although Peterson, whilst looking to box and move, gradually imposed what looked to be his greater strength as the fight wore on. Lamont came into the ring last night at 165lbs which is a massive 22lb rehydration from the weigh in.
In the later rounds Lamont was really using that strength to put it on Garcia and for me he boxed a very intelligent fight. Although it wasn’t always easy on the eye and at times boos in the audience rang out, post fight Garcia’s tone was one of relief, and I don’t believe his assertion of “doing it all again at 147lbs” He knows deep down he got lucky.
Yes, a win is a win, but this one isn’t fantastic news for Garcia, who, since his hard fought win over Argentina’s Lucas Matthysse ,has come under heavy fire for his MD win (another gift) over Mauricio Herrera last year and the awful mismatch that followed against unheralded Rod Salka. Last night against Peterson he needed a statement performance and we didn’t see it.
Its looking like Garcia will want to move up to 147lb, yet in a stacked division like that, how wise a move that will be remains to be seen. He will hold onto his belts for a while I’d imagine and take a break to assess his options, though I’m unsure as to whether we will seem him box at 140 again. Only time will tell. His mandatory, Vicktor Postol, who has stepped aside once already, will also have to wait and see himself what Danny does on the advice of his father Angel, and adviser, Al Haymon.
Lamont Peterson walks away with his held held high after that performance, though it will be small consolation to the now belt-less Washington fighter. I do hope he can secure another big fight, as he has impressed me a few times in his career, notably back in 2011 when he fought Amir Khan, whom he gave all sorts of trouble. A failed drug test and the “Man In The Hat” really overshadowed what was a great fight that night, though that’s definitely a topic for another day…
Danny Garcia is once again a very lucky man this morning. And that’s all that really matters here.