RING junior welterweight champion Danny Garcia will be facing a former world titleholder for the sixth time when he meets southpaw Zab Judah on Feb. 9 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn.
NEW YORK -- RingTV.com caught up to Philadelphia junior welterweight Danny Garcia, a 24-year-old who will defend his RING, WBA and WBC championships against ex-titleholder Zab Judah on Showtime on Feb. 9 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn.
Garcia (25-0, 16 knockouts) is coming off October's fourth-round stoppage of Mexican four-division titlewinner Erik Morales in a rematch of his unanimous decision victory in March.
The victory over Morales followed Garcia's equally sensational fourth-round technical knockout of Amir Khan in July, which added the RING and WBA belts to his collection.
Garcia will be in attendance at New York's Madison Square Garden for Saturday night's WBA junior middleweight title defense by Austin Trout (25-0, 14 KOs) against four-time, three-division titlewinner Miguel Cotto (37-3, 30 KOs) on Showtime.
In advance of Cotto-Trout, however, Garcia will attend a 3 p.m. press conference at Gallagher's Steak House promoting his clash with Judah (42-7, 29 KOs), a 35-year-old southpaw.
On Friday night, in the lobby of New York's Affinia Hotel directly across from The Garden, Garcia spoke to RingTV.com about Judah.
Once the RING, WBA, WBC and IBF welterweight titleholder as well as the WBO and IBF junior welterweight beltholder, Judah was last in the ring in March, when he stopped previously undefeated Vernon Paris in the ninth round.
A Brooklyn native who was ringside for Garcia-Morales II, Judah will represent Garcia's sixth consecutive bout against a current or former world titleholder following consecutive decisions over ex-beltholders Nate Campbell and Kendall Holt in April and October of last year, respectively.
Garcia addressed his future, below.
RingTV.com: Are you ready for February?
Danny Garcia: Yeah, I'm looking forward to it, man. I'm blessed and I'm happy, and I'm looking forward to it. I can't wait to perform
RingTV.com: Are you beginning to feel any pressure, considering the fact that your name has been discussed in boxing circles as a potential Fighter of The Year?
DG: I don't feel any pressure, because now, I just feel like, to be honest, I'm just having fun with it now. I've already proven that I'm the best. Now, it's just about having fun and enjoying being on top.
RingTV.com: How do you describe your style?
DG: I think that I'm getting more seasoned, and I've got a lot of boxing skills that I haven't shown the world yet, but I just haven't had to use them.
That's because I'm just walking my opponents down, and I'm knocking them out. Nobody's forced me to do that yet, but I've got a lot of weapons that I haven't released yet.
RingTV.com: Are you expecting to see some tricks from the veteran Judah?
DG: I'm looking for anything. I always prepare for the best, I mean, whatever. I'm just going into the ring at 100 percent in shape, and I'll adapt.
Then, whatever happens happens. That's how I always go into a fight. I don't ever go in with a game plan, like I'm going to do this or I'm going to do that.
That's because everything can change right up on you and mess up your whole game plan. So my whole game plan is just to be in shape and to adapt.
RingTV.com: Your thoughts on the fact that you're in the midst of a run where you're fighting a series of former champions?
DG: These are just guys who look at it like their experience will beat my youth. But like I have told people before, and like I tell fighters who want to fight me, you've just got to be more than just strong and aggressive to beat me.
You can't just be strong and aggressive and bring experience to the table, because I'm smart and I had 120 amateur fights.
RingTV.com: What about Judah's southpaw style?
DG: I've fought a lot of southpaws before. There was one tournament where I fought five straight southpaws and lost to a right-handed guy in the finals. I beat five straight southpaws, so southpaws ain't nothing to me.
RingTV.com: Who wins Cotto-Trout?
DG: Tomorrow night man, to honest with you, that's another one of those where it's experience versus youth. Austin Trout is real hungry, man, and he's a southpaw and he's technical.
Cotto's got the experience and he's strong, man. I can't call it because it's an even fight both ways. The one guy is a strong, up-and-coming southpaw, and he's the undefeated champion.
Miguel Cotto's the challenger, and he's aggressive. It's just one of those fights where it's going to be experience or youth.
With those, you can never tell until the fight is over. I'm here to just see a great fight. I'm in the game, but I'm also a fan, so I don't really pick sides.
RingTV.com: How much longer will you remain at 140?
DG: The move to 147? It's coming, man. I'm getting big for my weight. I'd say this one fight and then another one, probably. I think after I win this fight and then another one, that there may not be anybody else at 140.
There are only a couple of people that you can name, so maybe I'll get one more, and then, move up to 147 and conquer again.
Photo by Al Bello, Getty Images
Photos by Tom Casino, Showtime
Lem Satterfield can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org