Danny Garcia: The Greatest Hits

A look at the greatest moments in the remarkable career of former two-division champion Danny Garcia as he prepares to face Ivan Redkach Saturday night on SHOWTIME.

Don’t call it a comeback, Danny “Swift” Garcia has been serving foes for years. This Saturday, January 25, Garcia returns versus Ivan Redkach in a welterweight slugfest at Brooklyn, New York’s Barclays Center, live on PBC on SHOWTIME (9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT).

Garcia is eyeing a showdown later this year versus either Manny Pacquiao, Errol Spence Jr. or Keith Thurman. But with a dangerous opponent in front of him—and given the recent spate of upsets in boxing—the former two-division world champion can’t look ahead. What we can do is look back at some of the finest wins in his remarkable 12-year professional career.

5 AMIR KHAN

Date: July 14, 2012

Location: Mandalay Bay, Las Vegas

At stake: Garcia’s WBC and Khan’s WBA World Super Lightweight titles

Records at the time: Garcia 23-0 (14 KOs), Khan 26-2 (18 KOs) 

Result: Garcia KO 4

Summary: Garcia was a heavy underdog when he took on WBA champ Amir Khan in a July 2012 unification bout. Khan had won silver for the UK at the 2004 Olympics in Athens. As a pro, he bounced back from a shocking 2008 loss to Breidis Prescott to win multiple titles at super lightweight. Now he was defending one against a hungry Garcia, whose father Angel had stoked the flames of trash talk in the days leading up to the fight. 

Khan promised to punish Garcia. He lived up to his words early on, using his fast hands and pop to win the first two rounds and open a cut over Garcia’s right eye. Garcia remain composed, digging to the body to set up a beautiful counter left hook in the third that spun Khan around before he fell. He barely survived the round. Garcia dropping a woozy Khan twice more in the fourth to close the show in perhaps the biggest upset that year.

4 ERIK MORALES II

Date: October 20, 2012

Location: Barclays Center, Brooklyn

At stake: Garcia’s WBA and WBC World Super Lightweight titles

Records at the time: Garcia 24-0 (15 KOs), Morales 52-8 (36 KOs)

Result: Garcia KO 4

Summary: Erik Morales built a Hall of Fame legacy, winning world titles from 122 to 130 pounds. However, a string of losses convinced the Mexican legend to retire in 2007. Then in 2010, Morales announced his comeback. Following three warmup wins in his native Mexico, “El Terrible” returned to the US in April 2011 to take on Marcos Maidana for an interim 140-pound world title.

Against a bigger, stronger and younger opponent, the 34-year-old Morales turned back the clock, outboxing and, at times, outbrawling Maidana. The dramatic affair ended with Maidana eking out a 12-round majority decision that could have easily gone the other way. 

Five months later, Morales would become champion once more, winning the WBC 140-pound belt with an impressive 10-round technical decision over Pablo Cesar Cano. That set up a March 2012 match versus Garcia, an unbeaten boxer-puncher who had flown largely under the radar, despite wins over Nate Campbell and Kendall Holt. Morales had his moments but Garcia was simply too determined, scoring a knockdown and winning a wide unanimous decision. 

The rematch was the first fight ever at the new Barclays Center. Fresh off his win over Khan, Garcia steamrolled Morales inside four rounds. This one was never in doubt as right hands repeatedly buzzed Morales in the third – he walked to the wrong corner at the end of the round.

Then in the left, Garcia unleashed the punch that remains one of the most dangerous in boxing: his left hook. The shot caused Morales’ body to turn 360 degrees before he slumped to the mat. No count was needed.

3 ZAB JUDAH

Date: April 27, 2013

Location: Barclays Center, Brooklyn 

At stake: Garcia’s WBC and WBA World Super Lightweight titles

Records at the time: Garcia 25-0 (15 KOs), Judah 42-7 (29 KOs)

Result: Garcia UD 12

Summary: The undefeated Garcia was on the ascent; the unified world super lightweight champion and still only 25. Zab Judah had entered the professional ranks with much fanfare and largely delivered, winning a world title at 140-pounds and becoming the undisputed welterweight champion. Against Garcia, Judah was a 35-year-old veteran, one with enough speed and power to spring a surprise. Fighting in his hometown of Brooklyn—and given the heated trash talk between the camps during the build-up—he was highly motivated to do so.

Yet Garcia dominated the first three-quarters of the fight. Right hands shook Judah in the fifth and sixth. Another in the eighth dropped the southpaw. It looked like Garcia would close the show, but Judah rose, composed himself and mounted a comeback. A left cross in the 10th got Garcia’s attention. An even bigger one in the 11th shook him up. But the champion held on to win a 12-round unanimous decision and retain his world titles. 

2 LUCAS MATTHYSSE

Date: September 14, 2013

Location: MGM Grand, Las Vegas

At stake: Garcia’s WBA and WBC World Super Lightweight titles

Records at the time: Garcia 26-0 (16 KOs), Matthysse 34-2 (32 KOs)

Result: Garcia UD 12

Summary: Garcia now held victories over a who’s who of the 140-pound division. Yet he was underdog once again when he faced the heavy-handed Lucas Matthysse in the chief support to the Floyd Mayweather-Canelo Alvarez pay-per-view. 

The Argentinean was the hottest fighter in the game, coming off KO wins over Mike Dallas and Lamont Peterson. Most expected him to do the same to Garcia, some even thinking the Philly native had avoided Matthysse up until that point. 

Once the bell rang, however, it was a different story. Matthysse brought the heat against the slow-starting Garcia but once the latter found his footing, he put on a boxing exhibition. Garcia’s jab, body shots and shiftiness broke a game Matthysse down. Garcia scored a knockdown with his trademark left hook in the 11th to seal the deal on an emphatic 12-round unanimous decision, maybe the finest of Garcia’s career. 

1 Adrian Granados

Date: April 20, 2019

Location: Dignity Health Sports Park, Carson

At stake: No title at stake

Records at the time: Garcia 34-2 (20 KOs), Granados 20-6-2 (14 KOs) 

Result: Garcia KO 7

Summary: Having conquered the super lightweight division, Garcia moved up to 147 pounds. In January 2016, he showed his versatility against former four-division titlist Robert Guerrero, pounding out a 12-round unanimous decision to win the vacant WBC world welterweight crown. 

Close losses to Keith Thurman (2017) and Shawn Porter (2018) forced Garcia to work his way back up. In April 2019, he took on Adrian Granados, a hard-nosed slugger from Illinois who nearly defeated Adrien Broner in 2017 and gave Porter hell later that year. 

This was supposed to be a back-and-forth slugfest. Garcia had other plans, flooring Granados twice in the second. Granados showed grit in surviving the round, but the assault didn’t end there. Garcia peppered him with an assortment of shots, scoring a knockdown in the fifth as he pummeled Granados against the ropes. Another series of combinations in the seventh convinced referee Thomas Taylor to wave it off in the seventh. 

For a closer look at Danny Garcia, check out his fighter page. 

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