Ryan Garcia Delivers Eighth-Round Knockout of Oscar Duarte

Ryan Garcia has bounced back with a vengeance…

In his first fight with Derrick James as his trainer, the 25-year-old Mexican American boxer delivered a stunning eighth-round knockout of Oscar Duarte at Toyota Arena in Houston and live on DAZN.

Ryan GarciaGarcia’s stellar return to the ring on Saturday night comes after suffering his lone loss this past April.

Just when it looked like the pressure-fighting Duarte was gaining momentum, Garcia turned the tide in a flash with a left hook to the temple that put Duarte on jelly legs. Sensing he had Duarte hurt, Garcia smothered him with punches, including a right hook and uppercut, forcing Duarte to drop to a knee.

Duarte would rise off the canvas after the count of nine, though the referee stopped the fight right then and there, rewarding Garcia (24-1) with his 20th pro knockout.

“I fought hard to find myself again and I did a lot of soul-searching,” Garcia told DAZN’s Chris Mannix about returning to the ring since falling to Gervonta Davis by seventh-round KO nearly eight months back.

Garcia entered the fight flashing his quicker hand speed, though he seemed to respect the power of the heavy-handed Duarte. Toward the second half of the fight, Garcia noticeably resorted to the shoulder roll more, while moving around the ring enough to draw boos from the Texas crowd.

That hook to the temple ended any criticism of “King Ry” on the night as he positions himself to go after a 140-pound world title next, having these words for WBA titleholder Rolando “Rolly” Romero.

“I’m committing to becoming a world champion,” Garcia told DAZN. “If Rollys wants that, bring it on, Rollys.”

Ryan Garcia Survives First Career Knockdown to Claim TKO Victory Over Luke Campbell

Ryan Garcia is living up to the hype…

The 22-year-old Mexican American boxer survived an early knockdown to notch a stunning, seventh-round, TKO victory over Luke Campbell on Saturday night.

Ryan Garcia

In front of roughly 6,000 fans at the American Airlines Center in Dallas, Garcia won the interim WBC lightweight title with a left hook to the body that sent Campbell to his knees. Campbell attempted to get to his feet by the end of the count, but referee Laurence Cole waved the fight off to give Garcia the TKO win.

For most of his career, Garcia (21-0, 18 KOs) has been known for a social media following that has overshadowed his ring credentials. With the victory, he said he showed he was more than an internet sensation.

“You’re not who people tell you [you] are,” Garcia said in his postfight interview on DAZN. “You’re who you choose to be. And I chose to be a champion tonight. I wasn’t going to let nothing stop me.”

Campbell (20-4, 16 KOs), a former title challenger and 2012 Olympic gold medalist, was billed as the toughest test of Garcia’s young career, and the British boxer lived up to that.

In the second round, Campbell dropped Garcia with a looping left hook that caught him on the chin. Garcia said it was the first time he had been knocked down in his career.

“I think I got a little too excited over the moment,” said Garcia, who was carried into the ring seated on a throne while wearing a gold crown.

But “King Ry” responded in the third round, regaining his bearings and nearly ending the fight in the fifth. Garcia hit Campbell with a left hook at the bell that sent Campbell staggering into the ropes. Two rounds later, Garcia picked up the most significant win of his career.

Campbell had never been stopped in his pro career, even in title fights against Vasiliy Lomachenko and Jorge Linares. Garcia and Campbell both noted that following Saturday’s bout.

“That was the hardest shot I was ever hit with,” Campbell said. “I tried and tried to get up, but I couldn’t. I felt him coming on, and I was moving back, and when you move back, my body relaxed a little bit, and that’s the exact time he hit me.”

Garcia added, “I showed today that I’m special.”

Campbell agreed with that, saying of Garcia in a tweet afterward, “Well done and a massive future ahead for him. I wish him all the best.”

Garcia joined the ranks of young, promising fighters in the lightweight division. Teofimo Lopez, 23, won three of the four belts in the 135-pound division when he beat Lomachenko in October 2019. Devin Haney, 22, holds the WBC‘s top belt.

But the fighter Garcia said he wants the most is Gervonta “Tank” Davis, 26, who holds one of the WBA’s secondary belts and is coming off an impressive knockout victory over Leo Santa Cruz in October.

“I really want to be a man of my word,” Garcia said. “I really want to fight Tank. I know people are worried about it [happening], but I’m ready for it.”