Ryan Garcia is ready to revive his career following his first professional loss to Gervonta Davis in April, and he’s willing to step straight into the fire to find out if he’s still got it by taking on power puncher Oscar Duarte.
The super lightweight fight between Garcia (23-1, 19 KOs) and Duarte (26-1-1, 21 KOs) will headline a Golden Boy Promotions card on DAZN on Saturday at the Toyota Center in Houston.
“This guy [Duarte] is a threat. He's dangerous. So people who don't like me, you never know, waiting for that one punch [to hurt me]. For the people who do love me, you're about to see domination,” Garcia told BoxingScene.com in an interview.
The heavy-hitting Mexican Duarte is riding an 11-fight knockout streak and will surely test the chin of Garcia.
Garcia was dropped once from a counter left hand by Davis and suffered a knockout due to a debilitating body shot by Tank. Garcia has also been dropped by Luke Campbell during their 2021 contest.
The 25-year-old Garcia wants to prove that he can endure a tough opponent so that he can level up his potential options in 2024.
“I want to become a champion at 140. How can I become a champion if I am fighting a guy who’s not going to prepare me for a championship fight?” said Garcia.
“I expect a tough fight out of Duarte. He's a tough competitor and a tough fighter in general. From the looks of it, he packs a powerful punch. And it's going to set me up for the future. You can't expect to be a world champion if you are fighting guys that won't be a threat to you.”
Manouk Akopyan is a sports journalist, writer, and broadcast reporter. He’s also a member of the Boxing Writers Association of America and the MMA Journalists Association. He can be reached on Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and YouTube at @ManoukAkopyan, through email at manouk[dot]akopyan[at]gmail.com, or via www.ManoukAkopyan.com.