SAN DIEGO, July 28, 2017 – Making weight wasn’t a problem for lightweight Adrian “The Problem” Broner of Cleveland on Friday ahead of a crucial crossroads fight against the resurgent Mikey Garcia of California. Showtime will air the fight as its main event from the Barclay Center in Brooklyn at 9 pm ET/6 pm PT.
Broner’s motivation may have been the threatened $500,000 fine for every pound or portion he was overweight. He made it with room to spare at 138.75. Garcia weighed in at 139.5 pounds. Far better if Broner made the weight due to his motivation to inject new life into a career threatening to quickly fade to ‘entertaining gatekeeper’ status.
“I’ve said I’m not going to do too much talking,” Broner said. “You’ll see a more serious Adrien Broner. I’m going to let my hands do all of the talking but I’ll have plenty to say after the fight,” he said.
Broner (33-2, 24 KOs) is moving down one weight class for the fight with Garcia (36-0, 30 KOs), who is moving up one weight class. Broner has always had trouble making weight even at 147 pounds due to a sheer lack of discipline, a cardinal sin in boxing as far as we’re concerned. While we’ve never written a sentence with these two words together before, Broner appeared skinny at weigh-in.
Garcia’s star is rising after more than two years away from the ring due to business disputes with his former promoter Top Rank. Now 29, Garcia stayed in shape and has a new enthusiasm for the sport. He’s been crisp and powerful in his return bouts, including a Knockout of the Year in his January fight against Declan Zlaticanin to win the WBC lightweight belt. Enthusiasm breeds confidence, and confidence breeds power.
“This fight is much bigger still than some of the world title fights that me and Adrien have been part of and some of the title fights that are around the division,” Garcia said. “It’s a very big and fun fight, and it could easily be seen as the biggest fight of both of our careers.”
Broner can bring the braggadocio, but it’s not the same thing. He’s got a lot to worry about from Garcia. Although Broner should rehydrate to be the naturally bigger man, Garcia’s easy knockout of Zlaticanin, a man built like a low concrete block, demonstrated he should have no trouble with Broner.
Both Broner and Garcia consider each other his most significant opponent, and it’s not fight hype. Forget the multiple world titles each holds, four for Broner and three for Garcia. Look at the names on the resume. Broner was beaten by Shawn Porter and Marcos Maidana. He won a disputed split decision against Paulie Malignaggi. Garcia’s resume includes Orlando Salido and Zlaticanin.
Their conflicting circumstances will impact the fight. Broner, who turned 28 Friday, is an “old” 28 in the ring. In his last fight against Adrian Granados, he showed fatigue by the eighth round. He was fortunate it was a 10-round fight, or Granados might have squeaked out the decision victory. Broner will have no such luck Saturday in the 12-round content against Garcia.
Garcia is a slow starter who likes to spend a round or two sizing up his opponent. Once he settles in, look for him to try and mow Broner down. But Garcia’s greatest power isn’t in his fists, it’s in his brain. If he decides the risk vs. reward ratio is too great engaging Broner in a slugfest, he’s capable of boxing his way to victory.
“If I have to be aggressive, I will be aggressive,” said Garcia. “If I have to box, I will box. If I have to try to stay in the middle of the ring, then I’m prepared to do whatever it takes to win this fight. I know people still haven’t seen everything that I have to offer and I think Adrien Broner will be the one to challenge me enough and push me to that next level and bring out the best out of me.”
The only chance Broner has is to get busy easy and stay busy. With questionable stamina which could suffer after extreme efforts to make weight, it’s hard to see it happening. We’re calling the win for Garcia, by whatever means he decides to employ.
Jermall Charlo makes his debut at middleweight after relinquishing his super middleweight title on the undercard, facing.Jorge Sebastian Heiland of Argentina in a WBC title eliminator fight. Both made weight with ease, Charlo at 159.2 and Gaunchito at 158.2 .
Charlo (25-0, 19 KOs), defeated Julian “J’Rock” Williams with ease in December by fifth round knockout. He moved up in weight partly to avoid fighting his twin brother, Jermell, who also held a junior middleweight title. Heiland (29-4-2, 16 KOs) is a sturdy southpaw on an eight fight win streak. It is just his second fight in the U.S. Heiland knows few people give him much chance.
“I want to continue to move up to the bigger names, like I’ve been doing,” said Charlo. “Hopefully my performance in this fight will get me more notice from those big names and get me those fights. This is a new Jermall Charlo who’s better, bigger, faster and stronger. It’s my job to show everyone that on Saturday night.
Heiland acknowledges he’s considered the underdog, but he dismisses it. “If you guys consider me the underdog, I really don’t care,” said Heiland. “The key for Jermall will be his speed. He’s a fast boxer but he’s jumping up a division. I’ve been at this weight almost my whole career. I know he will be prepared, so I have to be too. Without a doubt, it will be a battle.”
Read our complete preview of the Broner vs. Garcia undercard fights here. These fights will be shown live on the Showtime Facebook page and YouTube channel, starting at 5:30 p.m ET/2:30 p.m. PT. We applaud Showtime Boxing and its team led by Stephen Espinoza for its approach giving fans “bonus boxing” via live streaming technology. It’s the future in boxing and promoters and networks need to get on board.
Gayle Lynn Falkenthal, APR, is President/Owner of the Falcon Valley Group in San Diego, California. She is also a serious boxing fan covering the Sweet Science for Communities. Read more Ringside Seat in Communities Digital News. Follow Gayle on Facebook and on Twitter @PRProSanDiego. Gayle can be reached via Google +
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