Featherweight contender Miguel “El Mikey” Garcia (30-0, 26 KOs) stopped by Leave it in the Ring’s sister station “Noche de Boxeo Radio” to give the fans an insight on his training regimen, his thoughts on fighting the big names in his division, and his future in the featherweight division, among other things. After thirty fights, Garcia is finally getting a shot at the title when he steps in the ring against the rugged Orlando “Siri” Salido (39-11, 27 KOs) who holds the WBO title and is coming off five straight wins. The fight will take place on January 19th at the world famous Madison Square Garden in New York City. Here is an excerpt of our interview.
Noche de Boxeo: Mikey thank you being on the show. Let’s start by discussing your recent fights. After fights against Celestino Caballero and Orlando Salido fell through you fought what many people thought was an easy fight against Mauricio Pastrana. How do you stay focused and in shape while waiting for the big fight, and how frustrating is it for you that these fights couldn’t be made?
Mikey Garcia: Yes, it’s a little frustrating that the fights I am looking for, the fights for the Championship didn’t happen. But I understand these things happen in boxing. Sometimes it has to do with the business side, such as promoters, or the fighter simply gets hurt. But although it’s frustrating, I am still training hard every day and stay ready in case I get the call and I am available to fight. I like to fight and stay active so that I am in the eyes of the fans.
NDB: People want to see you fight more but they don’t want to see you fight guys who are not on your level. There are many good fighters in your division that would make for great fights, but who would you like to fight in the future?
MG: I am willing to fight anyone, a current champion or ex-champion, I am willing to go in the ring and fight any fighter who accepts the challenge. Like I said before, there are champions who think fighting me is not to their benefit, there are others than want to fight but the networks won’t approve the fights, and there are other fighters who have recently moved up to another division. I always said I would have loved to fight Yuriorkis Gamboa, and I am still interested in that fight because he is undefeated and he held two belts in the featherweight division. Many fans and boxing experts still consider him a champion, even if he doesn’t hold a belt. I would love to fight him and prove that I can mix it up with guys like him as well as fighting the champions in my division.
NDB: Switching gears a little, let’s talk about your training. How do you stay in shape? What does your training consist of? What is a typical week for you?
MG: I dedicate myself to boxing 100%. This is how I earn my living and feed my family. A typical week for me is getting up at 6:30 am to go for a run. My dad and trainer Eduardo Garcia picks me up from home and we go jogging early. Some days we go running in the hills, other days we run in the park, we run according to the training we are doing that day. We take a break after the morning run and hit the gym in the afternoon. Once in the gym we either do sparring or work the bags, etc. We adjust our training according to the sparring we’ve done, how many rounds, etc.
NDB: How comfortable are you at your current weight? You are 24 yrs. old and as you get older it gets a little hard to lose the weight. How much longer will you be in your division?
MG: Look, I have been fighting at this weight since I started as an amateur at 14 yrs. Old, so I have been at this weight for 10 yrs. I started fighting at 125 lbs. which is featherweight for the amateurs. Then when I turned 17 I moved up to 130 lbs. or Lightweight. But because of the constant weigh-ins and to be more comfortable I moved up to 132 lbs. But once I turned pro I started at 126 lbs. and until now I haven’t had any big problems making the limit. I walk around at 138-140 lbs. which means I only have to lose 14 lbs., which I think is normal. I feel great in this division, I feel strong and fast. I don’t plan to jump divisions because they offer me a fight, my plan is to stay in this division until my body lets me know it’s time to move up. If I see that between fights I start gaining more weight than usual then I will decide to move up. If in one or two years I start struggling with weight then I will move up, but right now I am very comfortable.
NDB: I know you said you will not move up any time soon, but has it ever been discussed?
MG: Yes, that’s been considered as an option but my goal is to first get a Championship at 126. Right now there is no interest in my part of moving up to another division but I won’t rule it out in the future. There are a lot of fights at this weight and we hope we can make the fights the fans want to see.
NDB: We’ve had some comments from fans who want to see you fight and defeat Chris John. Do you think that is a fight you would want to make?
MG: I would be interested in that fight but to be honest I don’t think it can be made because of many reasons including promotion, money, etc. I also doubt Chris John would want to return to the US to fight, especially fight me. We know each other well when he was in Oxnard training for his fight against Rocky Juarez. He hired me as a sparring partner to help him prepare for that fight and even though I was younger and had a small injury, I gave him a lot of problems. So I doubt he would want to fight me, there is not enough money in it for him to want to fight me.
NDB: So you gave him a little taste of Oxnard, a little taste of Mikey Garcia’s power?
MG: Well a little taste of what I bring. I doubt they will pay money to bring him here to fight me. Unless I become a multi champion in my division and bring in a lot of money for both of us. But who knows? Maybe by then he is retired since he never fights outside of Indonesia.
NDB: We would like to conclude this interview by thanking you once again for being on the show and we wish you good luck in your fight.
MG: Thank you for having me.
Garcia vs Salido is part of a tripleheader which includes a fight between the unbeaten middleweight from Kazakhstan, Gennady Golovkin (24-0, 21 KOs) and Philadelphia’s Gabriel Rosado (21-5, 13 KOs). Also on this card is Carlos Burgos (30-1, 20 KOs) vs Roman Martinez (26-1-1, 16 KOs).
Noche de Boxeo Radio is part of the Leave it in the RinG Radio family and airs live every Monday at 8pm EST. You can listen to our show here http://leaveitintheringradio.com/