Conor McGregor’s loss to Dustin Poirier in the UFC may have reduced his chances of landing a boxing showdown with Manny Pacquiao (62-7-2, 39 KO), which could have been a very lucrative fight for both fighters. But Pacquiao, being boxing’s main draw, never seems to have a hard time finding opponents and, as things unfold recently, a potential new opponent for the Filipino boxing legend has been seen as taking MacGregor’s place.
The much younger Ryan Garcia (21-0, 18 KO) has been expressing his desire to face the eight-division champion inside the ring before, and also shortly after his demolition of the well-polished Brit Luke Campbell via a seventh-round knockout earlier this month. And it looks like everyone will be in for a surprise, as the young contender is likely to get that dream match he’s been wanting for a long time.
It was Mike Coppinger of The Athletic who revealed on his Twitter account that preliminary discussions are already taking place between Pacquiao’s camp and that of WBC interim lightweight champion Ryan Garcia.
Coppinger’s Tweet reads: “Sources tell @TheAthletic there are talks regarding a potential bout between Ryan Garcia and Manny Pacquiao. Preliminary discussions at this stage. Pacquiao, 42, hasn’t competed since victory over Keith Thurman in July 2019. He remains a champion at 147 pounds. Garcia at 135.”
As for which weight division the two should fight in, it remains to be seen. Garcia is fighting at lightweight, but he’s significantly bigger than Pacquiao in terms of height and reach. Pacquiao, on the other hand, has been fighting at welterweight since 2009 and is very effective in that weight division. Maybe they can agree to fight at 140 or 145. But until the negotiation between the two sides is over, we can only speculate.
But some boxing analysts are a bit worried and citing Pacquiao’s long layoff from boxing as something that may affect his performance come fight time, especially since he will be facing a younger, more active opponent who had just won a fight earlier this month. Pacquiao hasn’t been back in the ring since he defeated Kieth Thurman last July 2019, that’s a year and a half ago. Or will Pacquiao just poke fun at Garcia and knock him out at any round he wants?
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