Manny Pacquiao Next Fight: Pacman Could Face Mikey Garcia After Timothy Bradley Fight
- Onchie Ebriega
- Jan 07, 2014 06:59 PM EST
Top Rank promoter Bob Arum is reportedly looking to arrange a showdown between Manny Pacquiao and Mike Garcia as soon as possible, a veteran boxing analyst said last week.
Pacquiao, who is already set to start his 2014 against Timothy Bradley Jr. on April 12 in Las Vegas, Nev., will likely face the up-and-coming slugger in what could be a blockbuster fight either late this year or in 2015.
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ESPN Boxing analyst Dan Rafael believes Arum is pushing Garcia to move up weight as soon as possible to match him up against Pacman, who could leave Top Rank promotions after his current contract expires at the end of 2014.
"It wont take two years to move up to 140. Garcia defends his 130 title on Jan. 25 vs. Burgos and in his next fight he is moving up. Might take a fight at lightweight and then on to 140," Rafael said during the chat session on ESPN Sports Nation last January 3.
The 26-year-old Garcia will be making his first title defense at the super featherweight division against Juan Carlos Burgos on Jan. 25 at Madison Square Garden in New York.
If Garcia ends up triumphant in his latest fight, Rafael believed the hard-hitting Californian slugger could make a jump to 140 pounds in his second bout for 2014, putting him in position to face Pacquiao at the welterweight division.
"Might even go up to 140 for his 2nd fight of this year. And then Arum wants to position him to fight Pacquiao at welter. It will be a fast process if it goes the way Top Rank and the Garcia camp want it to," Rafael added.
Garcia has become perhaps the hottest prospect for Top Rank promotions for the last two to three years. In 2013, Garcia's name even became bigger following his sensational victories over featherweight champion Orlando Salido (via 8th round TKO) and Juan Manuel Lopez (via 4th round TKO).
Garcia also boasts the title as a two-division champ after blasting former WBO champ Roman Martinez (via 8th round TKO) in his first-ever fight at super featherweight division.
On the other hand, Pacquiao peppered Brandon Rios through 12 rounds to book a unanimous decision win in November, marking his first winning moment in the ring since his controversial split decision loss to Bradley and devastating sixth round TKO loss to Juan Manuel Marquez in December 2012.