Riverside’s Mauricio Herrera realizes what he’s up against with Danny Garcia

Mauricio Herrera of Riverside will have quite a task in front of him when he challenges Danny Garcia of Philadelphia for his two super lightweight belts on March 15 at Coliseo Ruben Rodriguez in Bayamon, Puerto Rico (on Showtime). And he knows it.

“I know this is a huge opportunity, and I’m going to take full advantage of it,” said Herrera, 33. “To have a shot at Danny’s belts has been a dream of mine for a long time.

“Danny Garcia is an intelligent and tough fighter, but so am I. I’m coming to Puerto Rico and I know there is a lot of pressure. But, hopefully they will support me, too.”

Herrera (20-3, 7 KOs) , who has never fought for a major title, is Mexican-American. Garcia (27-0, 16 KOs) is Puerto Rican-American, so he figures to have the bulk of the fans that night.

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Danny Garcia says all the right things at news conference in Puerto Rico

Super lightweight champion Danny Garcia is an outstanding fighter. He’s also smart enough to say all the right things at the right time.

Garcia, born and raised in Philadelphia, is of Puerto Rican descent. On Tuesday, he helped play host to a news conference in Puerto Rico promoting his March 15 title defense there against Mauricio Herrera of Riverside (on Showtime).

Garcia apparently wanted locals to know where his heart is, so he came with all kinds of good stuff.

“I am a Puerto Rican,” he said. “I could have been born on the moon, but I’m still a Puerto Rican.”

That’s not all.

“I think that Puerto Rico is going to accept me as its own after I win on March 15,” he said. “Philadelphia might be my birthplace, but Puerto Rico is my blood.”

Garcia, just 25, is 27-0 with 16 knockouts. Herrera, 33, is 20-3 with seven knockouts. The two will tangle at Coliseo Ruben Rodriguez in Bayamon.

 

 

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Super lightweight champ Danny Garcia to defend against Mauricio Herrera in March

Super lightweight champion Danny Garcia of Philadelphia will defend his two championship belts March 15 against Mauricio Herrera of Riverside at Coliseo Ruben Rodriguez in Bayamon, Puerto Rico (on Showtime), Golden Boy Promotions announced.

Garcia was born and raised in Philadelphia, and is of Puerto Rican descent.

“I’m a proud Puerto Rican and even though Herrera is a tough challenger, there is no way I’m losing in Puerto Rico,” said Garcia, 25; he is 27-0 with 16 knockouts.

Herrera, 33, is 20-3 with just seven knockouts. But he does have a January 2011 victory over current world champion Ruslan Provodnikov.

“I’ve waited a long time for a fight like this, and while I know Garcia is the favorite, I won’t be underestimated,” Herrera said. “I love the underdog role and I’m going to shock the world on March 15.”

 

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Danny Garcia, Lucas Matthysse make weight underneath Mayweather-Alvarez

With all the hoopla surrounding Saturday’s junior middleweight title fight between Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Saul “Canelo” Alvarez at MGM Grand in Las Vegas (on Showtime pay-per-view), let’s not forget that there is one heck of a semi-main event.

In it, Danny Garcia of Philadelphia will defend his two super lightweight titles against Lucas Matthysse of Argentina. It’s expected to be a hard-hitting thriller.

Garcia and Matthysse both made weight Friday before 12,200 at MGM Grand, unheard of attendance for a weigh-in. Garcia tipped the scales at the 140-pound limit on the second try. He wore a surprised look on his face when it was announced he first weighed in at 140 1/2. He got off, got back on only seconds later and it was announced he weighed 140.

It was kind of weird, as reporters talking among themselves laughed, saying things like, “I wish I could lose weight that quickly.”

Matthysse weighed 140.

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Danny Garcia: This was not supposed to be his time, but he made it his time

Junior welterweight champion Danny Garcia of Philadelphia was recently asked why, in his mind, there are still those out there who don’t quite yet believe he’s an elite fighter.

His answer was different, yet probably right on the money.

“I really don’t know because I feel like I’m before my time; a lot of people still don’t understand it because I’m not supposed to be here right now,” said Garcia, who Sept. 14 at MGM Grand in Las Vegas will defend his two championship belts against Lucas Matthysse of Argentina. “It wasn’t supposed to be my time right now. I made it my time. I took it and the people still don’t understand it, but I’m just going to keep building my legacy and proving myself.”

Garcia is right. He was flying under the radar, a victory over aging Erik Morales to win his first 140-pound belt in March 2012 notwithstanding. Morales was looked upon as past his prime, so while Garcia was given credit, no one was really singing his praises all that much afterward.

Then Garcia, 25, stopped fellow champion Amir Khan – in his prime – in the fourth round in July 2012. Too many, Garcia had arrived. Garcia knocked out Morales in the fourth round in a rematch in October. Garcia slugged it out for 12 rounds with Zab Judah and retained his two belts via unanimous decision in April in his most recent start.

Garcia (26-0, 16 KOs) also has victories over Kendal Holt in October 2011 and Nate Campbell in April 2011.

Garcia-Matthysse (34-2, 32 KOs) will be televised by Showtime pay-per-view on the undercard of the junior middleweight main event between Floyd Mayweather Jr. (44-0, 26 KOs) and Saul “Canelo” Alvarez (42-0-1, 30 KOs) of Mexico.

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Trainer Angel Garcia: Lucas Matthysse does not instill fear in him, or son Danny

Trainer Angel Garcia has quickly gained a reputation as a tough-guy who isn’t afraid to speak his mind, regardless of what anyone thinks. It therefore wasn’t surprising to hear his thoughts this week about his son Danny Garcia’s upcoming junior welterweight title defense against hard-hitting Lucas Matthysse on Sept. 14 at MGM Grand in Las Vegas. The fight will take place on the undercard of Floyd Mayweather Jr.-Saul “Canelo” Alvarez and will be televised on Showtime pay-per-view.

Matthysse, of Argentina, is one of the hardest punchers in the game, pound-for-pound. He has a record of 34-2 with 32 knockouts. No problem, intimated Angel Garcia, who trains his son.

“My job is not to worry about Matthysse,” Angel Garcia said. “I am not worried. He doesn’t put fear in me. His coach doesn’t put fear in me. His people don’t put fear in me. His country doesn’t put fear in me. Nobody puts fear in me. The only one I fear is God.

“Nobody is beating us, not right now, not tomorrow and not in the future.  Believe this, on Sept. 14, Matthysse is going to get his (butt) whooped.”

Although Philadelphia’s Garcia (26-0, 20 KOs) is the champion, there is no shortage of experts who believe Matthysse could be the first one to hand Garcia a defeat. Again, Angel Garcia seems unfazed.

“Danny is the most underrated champion there is and I am the most underrated trainer,” Angel Garcia said. “But it doesn’t matter to me. As long as I know and as long as Danny knows and we’re happy, then I don’t care what the world says.

“You can love me or hate me, but it doesn’t matter. I believe in me and I believe in Danny.  I always tell Danny that hard work and dedication pay the bills.”

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Danny Garcia: If Lucas Matthysse tries to open up early, he’s going down

The punching power of Argentina’s Lucas Matthysse has become a hot topic in boxing circles, especially after the way he dismantled Lamont Peterson in three rounds in May in Atlantic City. That gave Matthysse a record of 34-2 with 32 knockouts.

But Danny Garcia (26-0, 20 KOs), who will defend his two junior welterweight titles against Matthysse on Sept. 14 on the undercard of Floyd Mayweather Jr.-Saul “Canelo” Alvarez at MGM Grand in Las Vegas, is unfazed. So he says.

“As for Matthysse, he has power, but I have power, too,” Garcia, of Philadelphia, said after a workout this week. “I fought a lot of guys with power. Trust me, I plan to take away his power, make him miss and make him pay.

“If he opens up early to try to get me out of there, trust me, he’s making a big mistake. He tries that and the fight’s going to be over quickly.”

The card will be televised on Showtime pay-per-view.

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Danny Garcia-Lucas Matthysse title fight added to Mayweather-Alvarez

Floyd Mayweather Jr.’s junior middleweight title fight with Saul “Canelo” Alvarez on Sept. 14 at MGM Grand in Las Vegas (on Showtime pay-per-view) was already going to be a huge event.

It got even bigger Thursday when Richard Schaefer, CEO of Golden Boy Promotions, and Leonard Ellerbe, CEO of Mayweather Promotions, announced that a super lightweight title fight between champion Danny Garcia of Philadelphia and Lucas Matthysse of Argentina has been added as the main support bout.

Since Garcia-Matthysse is a fight that could have stood on its own as a main event on a different night, this appears to be a terrific move by the two promoters.

“We did not have to add this fight,” Schaefer said. “Tickets are already sold out, records are being broken. And yet we added this fight to this amazing night of boxing. We believe consumers deserve these kinds of cards.”

Matthysse, 30, is 34-2 with 32 knockouts and is one of the hardest punchers in the game, pound-for-pound. Garcia, 25, is 26-0 with 16 knockouts.

 

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Golden Boy Promotions CEO Richard Schaefer wants to make Garcia-Matthysse

With the way Lucas Matthysse took care of Lamont Peterson – decking him three times and stopping him in the third round Saturday  at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City – there figured to be a call for Matthysse now to fight Golden Boy Promotions stablemate Danny Garcia.

Richard Schaefer, CEO of Golden Boy, said Tuesday he absolutely wants to make that fight. Garcia (26-0, 16 KOs), of Philadelphia, holds two of the four major belts at 140 pounds. Matthysse, of Argentina, has an interim title. But the belts almost don’t matter here. With the explosive power of Matthysse (34-2, 32 KOs) and the dynamite combination of talent and courage of Garcia, it’s almost a can’t-miss hit.

“It is obviously the two best 140-pounders fighting each other,” Schaefer said. “For many reasons, many people think that Matthysse would win. And there are many reasons why some people think Garcia would win.”

Which makes any fight more intriguing, when it’s difficult to predict the winner.

 

 

 

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