Golden Boy founder Oscar De La Hoya believes Ryan Garcia’s recent show of hostility is based on a complete misunderstanding.
The fractious relationship between Golden Boy and Garcia flared up once more this week when Garcia, in an interview with Showtime’s Brian Custer on Custer’s The Last Stand Podcast, was asked to respond to comments made by De La Hoya’s partner, Bernard Hopkins, that were perceived as “disrespectful.” Garcia reacted rancorously, calling into question the loyalty of his handlers.
Hopkins, in turn, responded to Garcia’s claims by saying that Golden Boy was not interested in mollycoddling their fighters.
In his own written response to Garcia, De La Hoya stated that Hopkins’ comments were taken out of context. He also beseeched his charge to remain focused for his fight this Saturday against Oscar Duarte at Toyota Center in Houston, Texas.
“Bernard and I have spent decades putting on the biggest events in the sport—including Ryan’s last fight which generated $30 million for him,” De La Hoya wrote in a post on his social media.
“We build champions, help them navigate their careers to the top and make them the highest paid fighters.
“Ryan: keep focused on your craft instead of listening to some of your ‘team’s’ interpretations of comments taken out of context.
“Bernard and I will remain committed to taking your career to the top.”
The relationship between Garcia and Golden Boy has declined precipitously in the past year after Garcia criticized both De La Hoya and Hopkins for failing to show up in the press conference held in the wake of his knockout loss to Gervonta Davis in their high-profile fight in April. Garcia’s critique kicked off a public and acrimonious exchange with De La Hoya on social media. A few months later, Golden Boy sued Garcia over his contract; they are still thought to be in litigation.
Sean Nam is the author of Murder on Federal Street: Tyrone Everett, the Black Mafia, and the Last Golden Age of Philadelphia Boxing.