Posted on 05/31/2023
By: Sean Crose
He may have been knocked out by Gervonta Davis earlier this spring, but there’s still no doubting that Ryan Garcia remains one of the most popular fighters in the world. Whoever the young Californian decides to fight next, the announcement will be big news. Where exactly does a young, popular and hard hitting fighter like Garcia go after suffering his first defeat, however? Garcia’s promoter, the Golden Boy himself, Oscar De La Hoya, has an interesting candidate. Speaking to Marcos Villegas of Fight Hub, De La Hoya acknowledged that retired legend Manny Pacquiao is certainly a possibility.
“The reason why we can now talk about it, and it’s a viable option, is because Manny Pacquiao has been in a (legal) suit he’s been involved in that didn’t allow him to fight in the States,” De La Hoya said. Now that legal matters have been laid to rest for the Filipino icon, De La Hoya feels a fight with Garcia might be a real possibility. “It’s a very real option for both guys,” he said. While Pacquiao is now well into his forties, his legendary reputation proceeds him. People might want to see what the all time great still has in him. And a fighter like Garcia, who is coming off a major loss, might indeed be an intriguing opponent.
As De La Hoya sees it, Pacquiao-Garcia would be “the biggest fight for both guys,” perhaps at a catch weight. “I can see that fight happening at 142, 143 maybe,” said De La Hoya. Of course there’s other major opponents available for Garcia to face, something De La Hoya wasn’t afraid to bring up in the interview. “That’s alongside Rollys, and Pitbull and Teofimo Lopez,” he said of Pacquiao being a viable opponent.
Of course mentioning a potential Garcia-Pacquiao fight is far different than actually making a Garcia-Pacquiao fight. Throw in the fact that Pacquiao’s prime days are long behind him and that he really has nothing else to prove in the ring, a fight between himself and Garcia may indeed be nothing but a pipe dream, or an idea a good promoter like De La Hoya can toss off to the media for consumption in order to keep his fighter’s name in the headlines. Still, the name Pacquiao still sets off fireworks in fan’s minds, even if a fight with the young Garcia might lead to the collective rolling of eyeballs. In other words, the man known as PacMan still may have the potential to draw in fans. “I think Manny Pacquiao is the biggest fight that can be made,” said De La Hoya.