Mikey Garcia brimming with confidence ahead of first fight in 2 1/2 years

Mikey Garcia speaks at Thursday’s final news conference/Photo by Ed Diller, Dibella Entertainment


Some fighters might be a bit worried about having a fight for the first time in 2 1/2 years. Not Mikey Garcia. He’s brimming with as much confidence as ever.

“I have better skills than any fighter put in front of me,” said Garcia, who Saturday will take on Elio Rojas in a junior welterweight bout at Barclays Center in Brooklyn (on Showtime). “This will be the beginning of the next stage of my career, the most memorable part of my career.

Garcia, who was speaking at Thursday’s final news conference, has not fought since January 2014, when he defended his super featherweight title with a wide decision over Juan Carlos Burgos at Madison Square Garden.

Garcia (34-0, 28 KOs) then got into a contract hassle with his then-promoter, Bob Arum, and has not fought since. Garcia, who has won titles at featherweight and super featherweight, is now a free agent.

Rojas (24-2, 14 KOs), of the Dominican Republic, is expecting to beat Garcia.

“In this fight, I know I’m being brought in as an opponent,” said Rojas, a former featherweight champion. “But I’m going to let the fans know that I’m not just an opponent.

“I know who Mikey Garcia is. I have all the abilities to win on July 30. I’ve always been a boxer who was never protected. I always prepare to win the fight and this will be no exception.”

Rojas has had a layoff of 23 months.

Garcia-Rojas will fight underneath the featherweight world-title fight between champion Leo Santa Cruz of Lincoln Heights and Carl Frampton of Northern Ireland.

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