Middleweight beltholder Peter Quillin could soon defend his WBO title against promotional stablemate Danny Jacobs.
Who wins the Salido-Garcia 'War?' Ask the experts
Orlando Salido on Mikey Garcia: "Seeing him in the gym today, it was very calm, and the respect is mutual. But in the ring on Saturday night, it's going to be a war that will please the people."
NEW YORK -- Unbeaten Mexican-American featherweight contender Miguel Angel "Mikey" Garcia shook hands with Mexican WBO beltholder Orlando Salido between their separate open media workouts on Wednesday at The Kingsway Gym in advance of their HBO-televised clash on Saturday at the Theatre in Madison Square Garden.
They smiled and exchanged pleasantries in Spanish, among them, the promise that they would each try to knock each other senseless in order to please the crowd.
"Let's go to war," said Salido. "Let's give the fans something that they can remember for a long, long time."
"Thank you for the opportunity, and that's what I'm here for," said Garcia. "That's why I prepared myself so well. I'm ready to give you the fight that you want."
A 25-year-old resident of Oxnard, Garcia (30-0, 26 knockouts) has said that he is prepared for "the toughest test of my career" in Salido (39-11-2, 27 KOs), a durable 32-year-old winner of his last five fights by knockout, including two stoppages of southpaw ex-titleholder Juan Manuel Lopez.
Meanwhile, Garcia scored his eighth consecutive knockout victory over Argentina's rugged former titleholder Jonathan Victor Barros in the eighth round in November. In October of 2011, Garcia stopped Juan Carlos Martinez in the fourth round at The Theatre in New York's Madison Square Garden.
"Madison Square Garden has been the home to a lot of great fights," said Salido, "and this one on Saturday against Garcia won't be an exception."
Salido has put together quite a run of is own since falling by unanimous decision to Juan Manuel Marquez as a featherweight in September of 2004. Salido is 16-2 with 12 stoppage victories and a no-contest in his past 19 fights, the latter being an overturned triumph over Robert Guerrero in November of 2006.
Initially awarded a unanimous decision, 115-113, 117-111, 118-110, over Guerrero, Salido was later stripped of the IBF's 126-pound belt after testing positive for steroids.
In 2011, Salido sandwiched knockouts over Kenichi Yamaguchi and Weng Haya between the two against Lopez. He ended Yamaguchi's run of 13 straight wins, three by stoppage, and Haya's streak of three consecutive victories, two by knockout.
Coming off July's third-round knockout of Moises Gutierrez, Salido last suffered defeat by unanimous decision in September of 2010 against unbeaten former featherweight titleholder Yuriorkis Gamboa, a Cuban Olympic gold medalist and current WBA interim 130-pound beltholder.
"Seeing him in the gym today, it was very calm, and the respect is mutual," said Salido. "But in the ring on Saturday night, it's going to be a war that will please the people."
RingTV.com polled 17 boxing insiders as to their thoughts on who wins Salido-Garcia.
Orlando Salido TKO Mikey Garcia: This should turn out to be a great fight. Mikey Garcia is technically sound and does everything well but nothing great.
Mikey Garcia UD 12 Orlando Salido: Orlando Salido is arguably the best pressure fighter in the sport today, and he's also two-fisted bomber.
Mikey Garcia UD 12 Orlando Salido: Mikey Garcia might be getting ahead of himself with this one. Orlando Salido has been inconsistent, but not against opponents poised for stardom.
Orlando Salido TKO 9 Mikey Garcia: The 32-year old Orlando Salido has shown a tendency to fight up or down to his competition. The 25-year old Mikey Garcia is an A-list opponent with world class DNA in his veins, far more of a JuanMa Lopez than a Weng Haya.
Mikey Garcia TKO 10 Orlando Salido: The X-factor is how Mikey Garcia will react to Orlando Salido's attack. Will he go punch-for-punch or will he take his time and strike only when the openings present themselves.
Mikey Garcia KO 10-12 Orlando Salido: Mikey Garcia will be crowned world titleholder on Saturday because there is nothing to stop him from doing so. Orlando Salido may very well be a tough and uncompromising attacking entity.
But Garcia's methodical counter-game, tempered by his under-estimated power will dispose of Salido with ease. It might prove to be another great year for the Garcia family.
Mikey Garcia KO 10 Orlando Salido: I've been waiting for Mikey Garcia to get a title chance for a long time. I feel he is totally ready. Orlando Salido is a good champion, and he'll probably give Mikey hell for quite a few rounds.
Mikey Garcia TKO 9 Orlando Salido: Mikey Garcia hasn't knocked out a fighter of Juan Manuel Lopez's caliber twice, like Orlando Salido has done.
Mikey Garcia UD 12 Orlando Salido: Mikey Garcia is in the proper zone for continued success, and Orlando Salido will be his coming out party. No doubt that Salido is one tough cookie.
Tommy Rainone, guest/fan, professional boxer, New York
Matt Richardson, Fightnews.com
Mikey Garcia KO Orlando Salido: Orlando Salido has had a nice run going. But he's never been super consistent, and I think Mikey Garcia is the real deal.
Mikey Garcia KO 7 Orlando Salido: I love the Orlando Salido-Mikey Garcia fight, which will be entertaining no matter who wins. This is a difficult pick. Salido is one tough dude, as he proved twice against Juan Manuel Lopez.
Mikey Garcia KO 8 Orlando Salido: Mikey Garcia is a rising superstar, and I feel he'll want to stamp his rising stardom on a cagey veteran like Orlando Salido and stops him fairly late.
Mikey Garcia W 12 Orlando Salido: I'm going to go with Mikey Garcia in an upset 12 round decision in a very tough fight.
I was very impressed with the way Garcia gutted it out against Matt Remillard to overcome a severe case of food poisoning that started affecting him very early in the fight. I think it's his time.
Mikey Garcia TKO 9 Orlando Salido: Orlando Salido is an underrated veteran fighter who has fought some of the best out there and beaten most of them. I don't know how he lost 11 fights, but many came early in his career.
He can take a punch and come back for more. The question is will he be able to handle the heavy-handed Mikey Garcia, who has learned all the skills he needs from his big brother Robert.
He also has the gift of power. While he has not fought the quality of opponent as Salido, he's very patient, and will set Salido up for his knockout punch. That will come in the eighth or ninth round. Garcia by TKO.
By a vote of 14-3, the experts look for Mikey Garcia to overcome WBO featherweight beltholder, Orlando Salido in what could be a classic clash.
Photos by Chris Farina, Top Rank
Lem Satterfield can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org