LAS VEGAS — The father and trainer of THE RING 140-pound champ Danny Garcia has vowed that No. 1-rated Lucas Matthysse will represent “the easiest fight of Danny’s career” when they clash on Saturday night at the MGM Grand on Showtime Pay Per View.
In his last fight in April, Garcia (26-0, 16 knockouts) was in against a current or former titleholder for the sixth straight time when he scored an eighth-round knockdown during a unanimous decision victory over Zab Judah, a man who was floored in the 10th-round of a split-decision triumph over Matthysse (34-2, 32 KOs) in November of 2010.
Meanwhile, Matthysse (34-2, 32 KOs) has a 4-2 record, with four knockouts against six current or former titleholders, having floored all of them.
The Garcias were ringside for Matthysse’s last fight in May, when he Matthysse scored three knockdowns during a third-round stoppage of IBF 140-pound beltholder Lamont Peterson for his sixth straight knockout victory in a non-title bout.
Matthysse is of the opinion that he can accomplish similar success against Danny Garcia, telling RingTV.com, at one point, that Angel Garcia “is going have to come into the ring and get Danny Garcia out of the ring (after I) knock him out.”
“I see this as a tossup,” said Kevin Cunningham, trainer of IBF welterweight titleholder Devon Alexander, the last man to defeat Matthysse by split-decision in June of 2011. “But I’m rooting for Danny,”
RingTV.com polled 34 boxing insiders as to their thoughts concerning what will transpire in Garcia-Matthysse, which is on the undercard to the main event featuring Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Canelo Alvarez.
Lucas Matthysse KO 4 Danny Garcia: On the Lucas Matthysse-Danny Garcia fight, I think that it’s going to be a very good fight.
I think that the action will start early, and that both guys will get hurt, but I see both men hitting the ground and Matthysse stopping him in four.
Lucas Matthysse by TKO 9 over Danny Garcia: Lucas Matthysse is stronger than Danny Garcia, and he can also box.
He will not leave it to the judges after the Zab Judah and Devon Alexander split-decision losses. This will be Matthysse’s coming out party as he becomes an even bigger star.
Record: 1-0 [Mayweather UD 12 Guerrero]
Lucas Matthysse mid-to-late TKO Danny Garcia: This fight can’t be anything but explosive. The only question I have is how soon will the fireworks go off. I don’t think it will happen right away.
I think Danny Garcia is going to move a little bit and look to get off in spots whenever Lucas Matthysse is letting his lethal hands go. I think he’ll have some success doing this, and might rock or even drop “The Machine” early.
But Matthysse has got ice water in his veins. NOTHING discourages this guy. Matthysse will keep pressing and landing hard shots to Garcia’s body and head — particularly the right hand — until the defending champ’s face is a mess. I think the ref or Popa Garcia will see enough before we get to the 10th round.
Record: 10-5 [Last pick: Cleverly UD 12 Kovalev]
Lucas Matthysse KO 8 Danny Garcia: A knockout and knockdowns are the only sure pick in what figures to be the best action fight on the card.
Danny Garcia has proven he’s capable of surprise. But Matthysse doesn’t rattle easily, if at all. The Argentine also hits a lot harder than Amir Khan, who rocked Garcia, yet still lost to the junior-welterweight from Philadelphia.
If knocked down, Matthysse figures to get up with power that will exhaust Garcia and eventually finish him.
Record: 13-5 [Arreola TKO 7 Mitchell]
Lucas Matthysse KO 4 Danny Garcia: Much respect to Danny “Swift” Garcia and what he’s been able to accomplish since upsetting Amir Khan. It’s been a great run and with his father Angel Garcia in his corner, good fun.
It ends at the feet of Lucas “The Machine” Matthysse, a fighter on a quiet mission to prove that he’s the next big thing from Argentina and the best junior welterweight fighter on the planet.
Ultimately, Garcia is a slow starter who lacks the defensive boxing skills to do what Devon Alexander and Zab Judah did against the heavy handed Matthysse – avoid getting knocked out.
In a one-sided fight made to look easy by the single minded attack of Matthysse, power again prevails in the year of the puncher.
Record: 9-7 [Mitchell TKO 7 Arreola]
Lucas Matthysse TKO 4 Danny Garcia: Although I’ve picked an early finish I can’t shift the feeling that this might surprise people and go long. The book is out on Lucas Matthysse. He’ll be coming to the MGM Grand to make mincemeat of Danny Garcia.
But surely someone is due to throw a curveball and extend this power punching destroyer. Unfortunately I just don’t think Garcia can do it, and the Argentine will draw blood and mop up shortly thereafter.
Record: 5-3 [Arreola TKO 4 Mitchell]
Lucas Matthysse TKO 6 Danny Garcia: I can see this ending earlier as well. Danny Garcia’s got talent and power, but he’s also shown that he’s there to be hit.
I don’t see him able to avoid all of Lucas Matthysse’s punches, and we’ve seen that Matthysse eventually catches everyone with his heavy hands. Garcia will be caught, hurt and stopped, and Matthysse will be triumphant on the grandest stage possible.
Lucas Matthysse KO 8 Danny Garcia: Danny Garcia’s best chance to win is to find a way to exploit Lucas Matthysse’s slow start, and in doing so, inflict enough hurt to keep him from shifting into overdrive.
Once the Argentine finds his rhythm, however, Garcia won’t have the artillery to stop him. Because Garcia likes to brawl, he’ll eventually be drawn into a firefight that will prove fatal to his title reign.
Record: 10-6 [Arreola KO 8 Mitchell]
Lucas Matthysse SD 12 Danny Garcia: Lucas Mathysse and Danny Garcia are both great fighters. I just think Mathysse is the physically stronger fighter and slightly bigger puncher. Mathysse wins by close, split-decision.
Record: 1-3 [Kessler UD 12 Froch]
Lucas Matthysse TKO 9 Danny Garcia: It’s tough to pick against Danny Garcia because he always seems to find a way to win, even when he appears to be an underdog.
And it’ll be interesting to see how Lucas Matthysse takes Garcia’s trademark left hook in what could be a more competitive fight than some anticipate.
Ultimately, though, Garcia’s courage and tendency to get caught clean in exchanges will cost him against such a huge puncher.
Record: 9-3 [Arreola TKO 5 Mitchell]
Lucas Mattysse KO 9 Danny Garcia: The Lucas Matthysse-Danny Garcia fight will be the far more entertaining than most. I feel that a few of Lucas’s last couple of foes could beat Danny Garcia, including Olusegun Ajose and Lamont Peterson.
Right now, outside of Floyd Mayweather, no one is beating Matthysse. We are possably looking at something really special in Matthysse with his constant improvement. Garcia wont see the ninth round. Garcia hasn’t the wheels to run, and is out-gunned.
Lucas Matthysse TKO 10 Danny Garcia: He may not have the fastest hands or the most immaculate defense, but Danny Garcia just finds a way to win with his explosive left hook and accuracy in the pocket.
However, Lucas Matthysse has knockout power in both hands and the ability to apply consistent pressure. I see the Argentine eventually stopping Garcia down the middle with the straighter, harder punches as he sets his sights on a possible future showdown with Floyd Mayweather.
Record: 8-6 [Arreola TKO 6 Mitchell]
Lucas Matthysse W 12 Danny Garcia: I’m picking Lucas Matthysee over Danny Garcia. Danny is not going to stay on the outside, and when he exchanges with Matthysee, the Argentine’s very heavy hands will prevail. I also think Matthysee has more boxing skill than most people appreciate.
Lucas Matthysse TKO 4 Danny Garcia: Happy to see such a fan-friendly fight on this card. It will be very exciting. However, I think it will be competitive for only one or two rounds before Lucas Matthysse’s awesome power begins to dominate.
Matthysse’s relentless assault will stop only when the ref or Danny’s dad steps in to stop it. Expect that somewhere around the fourth round.
Record: 12-5 [Arreola KO 4 Mitchell]
Lucas Matthysse KO 5 Danny Garcia: Styles make fights, and the only style with which Lucas Matthysse has appeared to have any trouble as a professional is the swift-of-hand-and-foot boxing of Devon Alexander and Zab Judah.
Anyone who can’t get out of his way has fallen victim to the power of “The Machine.” And Danny Garcia, although deserving of much respect, actually isn’t as accomplished a boxer as Matthysse, and won’t be able to do what needs to be done.
It may be that Matthysse is more vulnerable to punches than we have realized to this point, and if he is, we’ll find out soon enough because these two guys are going to stand in front of each other for as long as it lasts. Garcia’s left hook will keep Matthysse honest, but his defense won’t be enough to keep him off.
Record: 1-0 [Mayweather KO 10 Robert Guerrero]
Lucas Matthysse KO 9 Danny Garcia: Probably my most difficult pick in quite some time. While Lucas Mattysse is on a major run and has the guns to back him up, Danny Garcia is no slouch when it comes to punching.
I also believe that he is technically sound and can make his opponent miss enough to give him an edge. Am I sure? Not at all. Garcia loses his cool and his crown in a late round punch-out.
Record: 9-6 [Arreola KO 4 Mitchell]
Lucas Matthysse TKO 9 Danny Garcia: When the fight was first announced, I thought there was no way Danny Garcia could win this fight. Though I’m still leaning Lucas Matthysse, I think Danny’s strengths give him a chance.
For one, Garcia can punch, and we haven’t seen Matthysse take a shot from a good puncher. Another thing is that Garcia can generally take a punch and isn’t afraid to exchange in order to land a big counter shot.
What has me worried is Garcia was buzzed by a way past his best Erik Morales in their first fight and he is there to be hit. If Garcia survives the early part, he’ll make it a fight, but I expect Matthysse to grind him down to a 9th round TKO.
Record: 8-1 [Arreola KO 9 Mitchell]
Lucas Matthysse KO 9 Danny Garcia: Lucas Matthysse has done more in his recent fights to impress than Danny Garcia, who has caught Amir Khan with a punch and then beaten faded veterans Erik Morales and Zab Judah.
Garcia is not a good enough boxer to escape the power punching of Matthysse, and I’d expect a stoppage by the Argentine in the middle rounds.
Lucas Matthysee TKO 10 Danny Garcia: Danny Garcia is a good fighter, with a solid chin. He’s young, proud and determined. His knockout victories over Amir Khan and a faded Erik Morales were exciting. Garcia can fight, but he’s never faced anyone as intense and explosive as Lucas Matthysee.
Matthysee is on a roll, having stopped his last six opponents. He blew out IBF junior welterweight champion Lamont Peterson a few months ago. I see a competitive fight in the first half with both fighters landing hard shots. Eventually, the sharper Matthysee will rattle Garcia with inside hooks and stop him by round 10.
Record: 2-1 [Arreola TK 6 Mitchell]
Lucas Matthysse KO 7 Danny Garcia: I think that Danny Garcia might start out well, boxing and moving, using the ring and trying to stay away and to pick his shots.
But I think that Lucas Matthysse is going to apply too much pressure and catch up to him and probably put him away in round six or seven.
Lucas Matthysse KO 7 Danny Garcia: Don’t sleep on Danny Garcia. He’s the type of fighter who does everything well but nothing great. With that being said, he simply gets hit too much, and against a puncher like Lucas Matthysse, that can’t be a good thing.
I don’t expect Garcia to get blown out early and actually think he’ll do well in the first few rounds, but sooner or later — probably later — Matthysse will land too many hard shots for Garcia to withstand. Say Matthysse by mid-round stoppage in a very good fight.
Record: 12-6 [Arreola KO 4 Mitchell]
Lucas Matthysse KO 10 Danny Garcia: This is a very intriguing fight. Ever since it was announced, I have given Danny Garcia a great chance to win. I give him a better shot than a lot of people have been giving him. I think that he’s a great fighter who has been improving.
You can tell that he’s getting better. But I just have to go with Lucas Matthysse, however, in this fight. I just think that he’s got a lot of momentum. I feel that his power is going to eventually be the difference later in the fight. I think that he will eventually get to Danny in maybe like the 10th round.
Record: 11-4 [Santa Cruz W 12 Terrazas]
Lucas Matthysse KO Danny Garcia: Danny Garcia has quick hands and should be able to land on Lucas Matthysse, but his flagging stamina late against Zab Judah gave pause.
Matthysse gets stronger as the fight goes on. Garcia may have a surprising early lead but, ultimately, the accuracy of Matthysse will set up a stoppage.
Record: 12-6 [Arreola KO Mitchell]
Lucas Matthysse KO 10 Danny Garcia: I hate to pick against Danny Garcia, who punches hard and finds ways to win fights. I’ve been burned by him before. However, Lucas Matthysse punches at least as hard as Garcia, and is probably a better boxer.
Also, the fact Garcia struggled late in his fight with Zab Judah shows some vulnerability. I see Matthysse getting the better of spirited exchanges until the Argentine finally scores a late knockout.
Record: 8-5 [Arreola KO 8 Mitchell]
Danny Garcia W 12 Lucas Matthysse: I think that Lucas Matthysse’s power dissipates late in the fight, in the sixth, seven and eighth rounds, and that if Danny Garcia’s sticks around that long, then I think that he’ll win a decision from him.
I think that it’s a fight where you may see both guys go down on the canvas, but I think that it will be a decision for Garcia in my opinion.
Danny Garcia KO 8 Lucas Matthysse: Not many think Danny Garcia has a chance against the power machine Lucas Matthysse. Just like no one thought Garcia could beat Amir Khan. But all Garcia does, and has been doing for the last seven years is win.
Boxing people forget the last time Garcia lost a fight was way back on August 25, 2007, when he was a teenager at the U.S. Olympic Trials. Matthysse looks like a world beater.
But I don’t think we’ve seen the best of Danny Garcia yet. Garcia, I believe, has greater boxing ability. He also possesses more power than he’s given credit for.
Lucas Matthysse W 12 Danny Garcia: I hate to go against Danny Garcia, and there aren’t many I would go against him with. But Lucas Matthysse is one of them.
I think Lucas will eat some big shots along the way, but will take them and get more of his own in, too. I’m thinking close on the score cards with the edge going to Lucas.
Record: 12-4 [Mitchell W 12 Arreola]
Lucas Matthysse W 12 Danny Garcia: I think that Lucas Matthysse’s power is pretty much unmatched in that 140-pound division, and he finds a way to sneak that power in there. Guys are surprised by it.
I think that Danny Garcia has always found a way to beat other people, but I just don’t think that he’s going to be able to find a way to get away from Matthysse’s power.
Record: 2-0 [Golovkin TKO 10 Macklin]
Lucas Matthysse KO 10 Danny Garcia: The styles of these two fighters should make for a great scrap at the highest level of the sport, and there are a few key things to consider going in. First of all, Danny Garcia is about two inches taller than Matthysse, but Matthysse’s long arms give him a reach advantage that could play a big role in the outcome.
Garcia is going to have to fight a perfect fight to keep from getting clipped. For a boxer with some defensive liabilities, that’s a tough task over 12 rounds. He can win this fight by boxing and giving Matthysse angles all night, but he will have to be all the way in or all the way out.
Matthysse’s lack of height can fool boxers into thinking they are out of his punching range, but due to his long reach, they are actually right in his wheelhouse. Garcia can be awkward at times, throwing punches from unorthodox angles which may play to his advantage in this particular fight.
I don’t see Garcia stopping Matthysse, but he can win a decision if he doesn’t make a mistake. When it’s all said and done, though, I believe that Garcia’s toughness will be his downfall. I can see Garcia ahead on the scorecards going into the last third of the fight when he makes that one big mistake and gets caught. I see Matthysse scoring a brutal, come-from-behind victory with a one-punch, Knockout-Of-The-Year type of ending.
Record: 6-1 [Arreola KO 5 Mitchell]
Lucas Matthysse KO 6 Danny Garcia: I’m going with Lucas Matthysse by KO before the bell sounds at the end of the sixth round. Danny Garcia is the champ, and I take nothing away from him as a fighter.
But Lucas Matthysse is in a zone and will knockout Danny before Danny can figure out how to actually hurt Mattysse or slow him down.
If Matthysse is able to connect with one of his power shots, he could put Garcia away, especially if Garcia leaves himself open while throwing those looping rights.
I don’t see Garcia getting into an slugfest and avoiding the big hit, though that could be tough with the relentless Matthysse. He just barely outworks Matthysse.
Record: 9-5 [Arreola KO 5 Mitchell]
Lucas Matthysse KO 7 Danny Garcia: Lucas “The Machine” Matthysse has lived up to his nickname. He is a man who won’t stop until you are knocked out. Matthysse has underrated boxing skills. Danny Garcia is the linear champ at junior welterweight.
This fight alone can serve as it’s own main event. Each fighter has power and skills. Matthysse just seems to be a level above Garcia. Look for “The Machine” to terminate Garcia’s reign inside of seven rounds, even if he has to rise from the canvas to do it.
Lucas Matthysse KO 7 Danny Garcia: This fight in it’s own right could headline a show, Lucas Matthysse comes in on the back of an absolute monster performance over Lamont Peterson, nobody does that to Peterson. While Danny Garcia looked good early before struggling late against Zab Judah.
Garcia has had his struggles, in Eric Morales I, Amir Khan early, and then late against Judah but he finds a way to win, you cant help respect that. That said against “The Machine” if he’s in harm’s way he’s in big trouble, Matthysse is a one of boxing’s biggest punchers.
I think Garcia is good enough to stay away from Matthysse for the early going and wouldn’t be surprised to see Garcia walk Matthysse onto a left hook to end matters however I think Matthysse’s form of late is scintillating and he’ll be the one who ends up victorious on this occasion catching up to the Philadelphia native in the mid rounds.
Record: 5-3 [Arreola KO 7 Mitchell]
Danny Garcia KO Lucas Matthysse: I don’t think that a lot of people are giving Danny Garcia the credit that he deserves. Lucas Matthysse has the tag of being one of the most feared fighters in boxing, and he’s the boogie man right now.
I mean, to a degree, some of that may be warranted. He’s a very physical guy, he’s proven that he’s a hard hitter. But Danny hits just as hard, if not harder than Matthysse from what it appears.
But Danny got more skill. I think that people don’t give Danny credit for the things that he does, defensively, and even offensively. Danny is a very crafty fighter.
So I’m riding with Danny just because he’s a personal friend of mine, and I like Danny, but he’s a champion who has fought great opposition, and he’s done what he was supposed to do and he doesn’t get the credit that he deserves.
So I’m riding with Danny Garcia. I don’t see this fight going the distance. Matthysse has been hit by Zab Judah, who still has a lot of power, but I think that the media has given Matthysse this iron-chinned tag prematurely.
You’ve yet to really see him get hit and see how he responds. I don’t see it going the distance, and I see Danny winning, so I see Danny possibly stopping Matthysse late.
I don’t have a round, because this fight can end in one round, or it can end in the 12th round. But if I had to choose, I can’t really see this fight going the distance, and if I had to pick a direct position I would say Danny Garcia by late stoppage.”
By an overwhelming 30-4, the experts have selected Lucas Matthysse to unseat Danny Garciia as RING junior welterweight champion.
[Note: Martinez-Burgos was a draw, meaning all who selected otherwise received a loss]
Photo by Gene Blevins, Hogan Photos, Golden Boy Promotions
Lem Satterfield can be reached at email@example.com