COMMENTARY | Floyd Mayweather's list of potential opponents has become a rather short one after the pound for pound king turned in a virtuoso performance against Saul "Canelo" Alvarez. It was one of those performances that was so good that it was ultimately bad because the challenge to find Mayweather an opponent that the general public thinks may have a shot at defeating him has become that much more difficult. Canelo was supposed to present a significant challenge due to his youth, size and power. All he really became was victim #45. But the quest to find Mayweather's next opponent probably started before Mayweather's hand was held high in victory. And it all started at the undercard press conference several days before the fight.
Press conferences for boxing matches are usually run of the mill affairs where both camps utter cliché lines such as "I'm in the best shape of my life" and "I'd like to thank *insert sponsor/promoter/team here*." Every once in a while someone breaks tradition and riffs off some noteworthy lines. But normally, there is nothing really special to write home about as both sides are only focusing on the upcoming fight.
So when Angel Garcia took to the podium on the Thursday afternoon before his son's fight with Lucas Matthysse on the undercard of Mayweather's tilt Alvarez, Mayweather Promotions CEO Leonard Ellerbe probably didn't know exactly what to expect. But as soon as the father of Danny Garcia began his epic rant, a light bulb likely lit up above Ellerbe's head.
Why? Because Ellerbe has likely found the next opponent for Floyd Mayweather.
And the key to all of this is Angel Garcia.
As Garcia began his rant by berating the naysayers for disrespecting his son followed by a suggestion that American press doesn't believe that Americans can fight ("The USA gets no props," he said. "The same country that sends the welfare check to you. You get that check and sign it don't you, then you want to be an Americanito."), things may have started falling into place as it has become increasingly difficult to find an opponent for Mayweather that will hold the interest of the public after Mayweather's dismantling of Canelo.
You see, Angel Garcia is gold on the microphone and that is the perfect foil for Mayweather. He's a volatile personality that demands your attention. The difference between he and Robert Guerrero's loud mouth father, Ruben, is that Garcia is always like this. He's gotten under the skin of Zab Judah before their fight, spouted off numerous times to anyone within an earshot about how his son doesn't get the credit he deserves and recently called Matthysse a "little bum." His rant at that press conference perhaps spelled out everything that could work to make a Garcia-Mayweather fight somewhat interesting.
"This is a brutal sport and I'm not going to be humble. Danny had to earn his, he had to fight for his. I told him that since he was a young kid, nobody will ever give you anything," Garcia said. It's the perfect underdog story where Danny has constantly been expected to lose, only to come out on top. The fight with Matthysse was no different and neither was the outcome. The undefeated Garcia thoroughly outclassed his Argentinean opponent and once again proved why you can't bet against the Puerto Rican kid from Philly.
"I'm the most underrated trainer there is and he's the most underrated fighter out there," Angel Garcia stated after his son's unanimous decision victory win. "And you guys still won't give him credit but it doesn't matter to us because we are still undefeated."
But at this point, you'll be hard pressed to call Garcia the underdog against anybody in the 140 lbs weight class. Anybody except Floyd Mayweather. And as long as Danny Garcia is an underdog, the amount of vitriol being spewed from the mouth of Angel will be nothing short of entertaining.
Currently, no other opponent delivers a narrative quite as engaging as the Garcia duo. It also helps that Garcia is young (25) and unbeaten (26-0). Where Danny Garcia likes to let his fists do the talking inside of the ring, Angel Garcia likes to bump his gums outside of the ring. Putting a camera on Angel Garcia for Showtime's "All Access" would be nothing short of entertaining. Surely, Angel will have a slew of witty one-liners for Mayweather. And just as surely, Mayweather will have someone that he work out his verbal jabs on. If nothing else, it would surely make for some engaging television leading up to the fight.
A mouth like that can do nothing but sell a fight. He's like professional wrestling's great managers that do the talking while their athletes do the destroying. Think Bobby Heenan, Paul Heyman, Bill Alfonso and Jimmy Hart. The dynamic is unique in the fact that it is a father and son combination and there just has to be a few interesting stories that will engage casual boxing fans. You think Angel will be short on words when it comes to whether or not his son can beat Mayweather? Think again. As a matter of fact, Garcia already has a name for the potential showdown.
"If that fight was to happen, I would call it 'The Holy War' because it would be two gifted fighters that God put on this planet to fight," Garcia said. "We still have to prove ourselves to you guys because people still doubt the champion of the world."
As long as Garcia is the underdog there will be a story. And, up to this point, Danny Garcia has proved the naysayers wrong. So what's one more fight against another favorite? A massive paycheck and the ability to become the #1 pound for pound fighter in the world. As for his father, he just can't avoid exploding at any given moment. And with his son's win against Matthysse, Team Mayweather might not be able to avoid the Garcias as their next opponents.
Andreas Hale is a former editor at websites including BET.com and HipHopDX.com. Today, he resides in the fight capital of the world and has covered boxing and MMA for mainstream media outlets such as MTV.com and Jay-Z's LifeandTimes.com, as well as die-hard outlets, including FightNews.com, Fight! Magazine, Ultimate MMA, CagePotato.com and others.
You can follow him on Twitter (@AndreasHale).
- Sports & Recreation
- Floyd Mayweather
- Danny Garcia
- Angel Garcia