PHILLY BOXING HISTORY - December 05, 2020
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SPENCE DEFEATS GARCIA
 
Story by John DiSanto
Photos by Ryan Hafey / PBC
 

 
   

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 would be.

 


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.

   
 

 

 
 


John DiSanto - Arlington, TX (via Fox-PPV) - December 05, 2020
 

 
     
 

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