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STAFF PICKS | ERROL SPENCE JR VS. MIKEY GARCIA

Paul J Daley GARCIA UD – Mikey Garcia is a problem solver, able to adapt to situations that unfold before him although on this occasion I have to be honest I was left to second guess his decision to take this fight, Since the announcement I immediately fell into the same think process as many of Spence is too big / strong and ordinarily in these circumstances I am a firm believer that weight classes are to be respected but I also am of the opinion that Mikey is the exception to the rule the same way Manny Pacquiao continues to be.

Spence will rightly be the firm favourite heading in Saturday’s bout, He’s the divisions elite, he’s big at the weight and supremly confident in his own abilities, which is for good reason.

We have see previous his waves of body shots that act to drop the guard of an opponent, each serving to hit the sweet spot just under the rib cage before the enevitable right hand upstairs usually finishes that particular nights work, he is sensational, no two ways about it and this is what Garcia will have to conteract in Dallas.

Garcia loves to outthink his opposition, his higher level of ring intelect allows him to do so, always steps ahead of the man standing accross from him, setting traps he akin to a crocodile who lies in wait, patient in his approach, inch by inch dragging fighters in to the deep murky waters of the later rounds before drowning them on route to a decision or stoppage loss.

I don’t foresee a stoppage in this case, I may even be allowing my heart to rule my head somewhat in my prediction which it has been known to do on occasion, but I honestly feel that Mikey and his brother have seen a weakness in Spence that they whole heartdely believe they can exploit. that being said Im going with Mikey via decision in the hope that if this does enter the realm of reality that the judging doesnt come into question, knowing as we do Spence is fighting in front of his legion of support.

On a sidenote, both should be commended on taking this fight, Mikey obviously from his standpoint is trying to conquer Everest, a bigger, stronger and more formidable foe than he has ever encounter before whilst Spence is in a no win situation, If he wins people will say he was the bigger man and for that reason it wouldnt come as a surprise, if he losses people will alternatively question his standing in the division, for this reasoning I tip my hat to both men as I await like a kid on christmas eve for the gift of a true boxing display.

LEE THORNTON – SPENCE – Mikey Garcia vs Errol Spence Jr will be a display of two talented boxers with limitless potential. Looking at this fight Garcia is a massive underdog due to him moving up in weight, however Garcia I believe has advantages on defense, counterpunching and experience.

I believe Garcia will win the majority of early rounds but eventually the size and style of Spence Jr will break Garcia down with constant jabs, bodywork and pressure.

Garcia has put alot of muscle on for this fight which I believe will be an issue for him late in this fight as Garcia is unfamiliar fighting at this weight class. 

CRAIG MORGAN – SPENCE – Spence v Garcia, two outstanding boxers, both in their prime but with contrasting styles. Some say foolishly, some say it’s his determination to succeed but Garcia has called out a man that is regarded as one of the best Welterweights in the world. Massive for the weight, Spence will outweigh Garcia considerably on fight night.

Garcia is fundamentally sound and does everything well. He has a good variety of punches & has remained unbeaten whilst boxing through four weight classes. He carries enough power to be respected but time will tell if he can bring it up from 135lbs to 147lbs. 

Spence is a hard hitting southpaw, who wouldn’t look out of place at 154 or even 160lbs. He likes to walk opponents down and is a formidable body puncher.

If Garcia were to pull off the upset, it would be a massive statement to make. If they were the same size naturally, I’d say it would be a close fight but I can’t see how Garcia will be able to stop Spence coming forward. Garcia has shown a good chin previously & will need it in this fight.

JONATHAN HARRIS – SPENCE KO/TKO – Spence V Garcia when first announced left me rather puzzled, it was a mismatch that quite frankly didn’t have much of an argument to decide the winner, I was basing my thought process on the edge of “A good bigger man will always beat a good smaller man” 

But I was wrong, with deeper thought and multiple calculations of previous fights not only of recent, but also of the history of the sport, that scenario is not always the case, and has been squashed a number of times.

Both men are strong and very skilled, with Spence evidently being the stronger of the two, his fight against Brook who of my opinion is a very strong fighter, Spence for the most part was able to man handle the Sheffield fighter into humblness.

Also Spence has one of the best body work of any fighter on the scene at the moment, he is a true labourer of body work, grafts and wears down opponents by taking away pockets of air each time he lands crucial blows to the ribs and kidneys, work that is quite often forgotten about by other fighters other than the Mexican bred punches. 

So where does that leave Mikey? Out strengthened and with urine darker than a winter’s night in Harlem? Not quite!

Mikey has let it be known in multiple news stations and interviews that he thinks he is clearly the more skilled fighter and I believe that he is, apart from the body work of Spence, Garcia excels in almost every other aspect. He is not flashy, he is not the most exciting, but and it’s a big but! His simple techniques and ground works of boxing skills are almost flawless, he has taken the basics of boxing and perfected it with a slight twist of his own. 

This really makes for a brilliant fight and a lot more competitive than most seem to think, I honour the bravery and courage of Mikey Garcia to step up and dare to be great, but this time I think he may have bite off a little more than he can chew, and in the end the shear size and strength of Spence will wear down Mikey for a late round stoppage maybe 11th or 12th round.

Over all another fantastic fight for fans and a show of skill and courage that we will not forget! Best of luck to both fighters and may the best man win! Which means (Judges! keep it real!) 

STEVE HAIGH – SPENCE – Common sense says a good big un beats a good little un when all things are near equal and I’m not swaying from that in this instance. However theres a factor where Errol Spence Jr may potentially come unstuck.

Theres two or possibly three natural divisions between the two fighters in terms of size and although I dont believe the Texan will walk into the ring on Saturday with the knockout being first foremost on his mind, he has already stated that its how he wins that matters. It could play into the hands of Garcia.

If Spence loads up with the mindset of being the bigger man and its just a matter of time before he gets him man out of there then it buys time for Mikey to get his shots off and move out of range.

Mikey cannot stay inside for periods, I believe his best chance is to come into this fight around 143 or 144 maximum. Speed is key to a winning formula for Garcia.

On the other hand Spence could and should be looking to time his man but both could try to play counterpuncher in this fight for different reasons. Its a very intriguing fight and I’m predicting Spence to win late or on points but not without having to solve a puzzle or two. 

DEAN BERKS – GARCIA PTS – This is already one of the best match-ups of the year. With a combined record of 63-0, 51 KO’s, both are willing to risk it all to prove their own greatness, and that’s exactly how it should be.

Both are similar in their approach, aggressive counterpunchers who set traps then time their opponents with powerful blows. Both use their feet to deftly slide out of range before punishing there opponents and both rarely waste punches.

The one thing that is continually mentioned is the size difference. I think if Garcia was similar in height then many would alter their opinion. But even with the difference, I still give Garcia a helluva shot based on the belief that I think he could beat both Porter and Thurman, and that he would push Crawford, whom I consider the division leader, close.

My only concern is on whether he can take Spence’s power. If he can, then that opens up everything. This is a head and heart moment, and on this occasion I am following my heart. Cue the upset: Garcia on points.

FINAL TALLY – SPENCE JR 4 V 2 GARCIA

I've been in the boxing industry for over 16 years but been a fan for almost double that figure. I'm the proud owner of TopClassBoxing which continues to go from strength to strength as we strive to give fight fans a voice to be heard amongst the community. I've also had several articles published by reputable magazines and you can usually catch me around ringside.

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