Mikey Garcia was on the verge of securing the biggest fight of his career against Manny Pacquiao in 2020, only to see Covid-19 obliterate the agreement.
As revealed months later, Garcia had agreed on a two-fight deal with Pacquiao for back-to-back Pay Per Views. The whole saga got scrapped when the pandemic hit.
Both sides attempted to resuscitate the fight in 2021. However, Errol Spence came calling, and Pacquiao’s head got turned.
MANNY PACQUIAO DEFEAT
In a cruel twist of fate, Spence pulled out. This scenario allowed Yordenis Ugas to step in and defeat the Filipino Senator on points.
The whole Manny Pacquiao debacle must have been a tough pill for Garcia to swallow.
Now, the multi-weight world champion returns in a contest that largely got greeted with head-scratching upon the confirmation.
Garcia will face the unheralded Sandor Martin in a firm hiding to nothing on October 16. The headliner hasn’t lit a fire under the welterweight division by any stretch of the imagination.
Nonetheless, the 33-year-old has to win and win well to keep himself in the mix to face the winner of Terence Crawford vs. Shawn Porter or Spence himself in 2022.
Promoter Eddie Hearn is just looking forward to returning to America after criticism over a lack of shows stateside.
“I am really looking forward to getting back to the States with a cracking card in Fresno,” said Hearn. “It’s great to see Mikey back in the ring, a future hall of fame star that always makes for entertaining fights.
“He is hunting his next World title target – but this is a massive opportunity for Sandor. One that he will be desperate to take with both hands.”
Promoter Rick Mirigian, who is working with Matchroom on the event, added: “It’s an honor to work with Matchroom and Mikey Garcia on this night.
“October 16 will be a night no one will forget here in Fresno; I promise you that.”
Also on the bill is a WBO title clash between Ewin Soto and Jonathan Gonzalez. At the same time, Esteban Bermudez puts his strap up for grabs too.
“We have two fantastic World title fights in the always exciting Light-Flyweight division with WBO champion Elwin Soto and WBA champion Esteban Bermudez putting their belts on the line against Jonathan Gonzalez and Jesse’ Bam’ Rodriguez, respectively.
“Fresno fight fans are in for a real treat on October 16,” concluded Hearn.