Welterweight champion Errol Spence Jr. defended his WBC & IBF title
belts by unanimous decision over former two-division champ Danny
Garcia, Saturday, December 5, 2020 at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, TX.
In the lead up to the bout, the biggest question surrounding the
fight was if Spence would be himself after the long layoff following
the terrible car crash that miraculously did not take his
life. After a few rounds of action on Saturday night, it was clear
that Spence was indeed back in form, and that the likelihood of a
Garcia win was suddenly reduced to a "puncher's chance" that never
came during the course of the full twelve rounds.
Spence started slowly, but as the fight progressed he shook off the
fifteen months of rust, picked up the pace and began landing with
more frequency. It didn't take long for the champ to establish that
his accident and the subsequent ICU stay had not diminished him in
any considerable way. Garcia remained in the fight and landed some
solid shots that flirted with a change of momentum, but he fell
behind on the cards, losing the first eight rounds.
Garcia's best moment in the first half was the hard right hand he
landed in the fifth. The punch came after Spence, a southpaw,
drilled home a stiff left. However, Garcia's shot was harder and
gave a glimmer of hope to his fans.
However, it wasn't until the ninth that Garcia, with his left eye
swelling, took a round on my scorecard. Another right by the
Philadelphian was the highlight and started a three-round rally that
shifted the action Garcia's way for a period. Danny also took the
tenth, and then edged the eleventh by a whisker.
Spence was back in charge in the final round, seemingly refreshed
and eager to close the show. When the bell ended the fight, the
boxers embraced each other, both clearly aware of what the result
The official scores were all for Spence, easily. Steve Weisfeld and
Barry Lindenman both saw the fight 116-112 (8-4 in rounds), while
Tim Cheatham scored it 117-111 (9-3). My card mirrored Cheatham's.
Garcia's trainer and father, Angel Garcia, known for his hot-headed
responses to most things related to his son, did not object. It was
clear that his son was behind throughout the fight. Between rounds,
Angel had implored Danny to do more and press the action, but the 32
year old former champion could not match Spence's skills.
Danny Garcia, always a class act, gave Spence full credit for the
win and conceded defeat to the champion in his post fight interview.
It would be nice if every fighter was as respectful and as in sync
with reality as Danny Garcia, 36-3, 21 KOs, was on Saturday night.
Garcia's future is cloudy now, although he clearly has plenty of
fight left in him. His two previous losses were close decision
defeats to Keith Thurman and Shawn Porter, two of the top
147-pounders. Those bouts were razor-thin losses that appeared to
slip from Danny's grasp. His lose to Spence was far more clear cut
and beyond dispute. Garcia can still compete with the very best, but
must get back in line now.
Spence, 27-0, 21 KOs, has defeated most of the top dogs at
welterweight except for WBO champ Terrence Crawford and WBA Champ
Many Pacquaio. His next fight probably won't be, but
certainly should be, against Crawford, maybe the best fighter
in the world at the moment. A match with Pacquaio would be an
acceptable option, but it is Spence-Crawford that boxing fans want
to see most.