After rumors and negotiations to fight almost anybody with a name that’s within 3 weight classes of himself, Mikey Garcia finally settled on an opponent with Sergey Lipinets as first reported by 3KingsBoxing.com [link below]. Most fans almost felt disappointment with the decision but Garcia himself believes he made the best choice.
At one time Garcia was the likely opponent for Miguel Cotto’s last fight. Those negotiations fell apart due to Cotto’s promoter, Golden Boy, insisting that Garcia sign a multi-fight deal as a stipulation to receiving the opportunity. Between this stipulation and the fact that Garcia would’ve literally had to move up close to three weight divisions for a Cotto fight caused the negotiations but o fall apart. Eventually, Golden Boy fighter Sadam Ali stepped up and won the Miguel Cotto sweepstakes.
Almost immediately after talk of Garcia/Cotto ended the talk of Mikey vs WBA lightweight champion Jorge Linares began. The two sides entered into negotiations for the unification fight and at one time were close to announcing a deal. Then out of the blue Garcia turned a 50-50 offer for reasons he never disclosed.
I know you’re thinking “50-50 wasn’t enough” well consider the fact that Garcia was getting 50-50 of a fight that he had no promotional or financial obligation for? All in all it was a fair deal and his team has pretty much conceded that thought.
Next were rumors that Garcia didn’t take the Linares because he was guaranteed $3M for a fight against IBF lightweight champion Robert Easter Jr. According to sources close to both sides this fight was ready to take place in late January but right before an announcement was expected people close to team Garcia were saying that Mikey was fighting Omar Figueroa next. 3KingsBoxing.com reported that contrary to the rumors there was no Figueroa agreement in place.
On Monday Garcia talked to the media about his decision to face Lipinets and believes he definitely made the correct choice.
“My dad always wanted a three-division world champion, and now I have a chance to give him a fourth title. That’s something that really excites me.”
“It would be a great accomplishment to be in the discussion with guys like Manny Pacquiao and Juan Manuel Marquez, that would be a win in itself,” Garcia added. “But it wasn’t on my mind when taking this fight. I just want to keep fighting the best out there.”
It is still unclear if the move up to the junior welterweight will become a permanent one for the Oxnard resident. This will be Garcia’s second straight fight in the division after previously defeating former four division champion Adrien Broner there back in July.
Garcia did request permission from the WBC to take the Lipinets fight and still retain his 135lb title. According to a statement received from the sanctioning body that request was granted.
By: Chris ‘Bone’ Henderson