Oscar De La Hoya offers backhanded compliment to Ryan Garcia, says he is more than ready for Devin Haney – Ring News 24

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Ryan Garcia. Photo credit: Golden Boy/Cris Esqueda

Oscar De La Hoya says Ryan Garcia 24-1 (20) reminds him a little of Floyd Mayweather Jr. Not as a boxer, mind you, but as an irritant that is both annoying and distracting.

The promoter meant it as a compliment as he sought to hype up the 25-year-old Garcia’s challenge to WBC junior welterweight champion Devin Haney 31-0 (15) at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York on Saturday night.

The bad blood between the boxers has been obvious at the press events they have attended together. Garcia’s frequent social media posts have only thrown fuel on the fire, but have also caused question to be asked about his physical and mental fitness for the bout.

The Golden Boy Promotions boss says there’s nothing to worry about. In fact, Garcia has former undisputed lightweight champion Haney, 25, right where he wants him.

“It’s gonna be an intense fight,” De La Hoya said. “These guys can’t stand each other, so if they take that energy inside the ring, it’s gonna be a helluva fight. It’s gonna be fast-paced. [Garcia’s] right where he wants to be. Look at him. He’s ready. He’s on point.

“It gives me confidence that he got under Haney’s skin. I’ve never seen Devin like that. Man, he pushed him. He’s rattled. He’s like – Ryan actually reminds me of the way Floyd used to get into your head, you know, and take you out of your game plan. Ryan took a page out of his book, I think.

“I’ve never seen Haney like that – pushing him. It’s like, you take the focus away, you know? And now Haney wants to knock him out and go in there, and, well – let’s go. It’s a good sign.”

De La Hoya added: “When you’re in the ring, and they get under your skin, your game plan goes out the window. It always happens.

“He got into his head, and come fight night you gotta keep your composure. So we’ll see. We’ll see what happens.”

The latest question around Garcia’s preparedness for the fight relates to his weight. At a press event on Tuesday in Manhattan he appeared with no shirt. A number of fans and pundits believed he looked much bigger than the contracted weight to 140-pounds, but De La Hoya says there’s nothing to see here.

“No concerns whatsoever,” De La Hoya said. “He’ll make weight.

“He’s been 1000 percent focused. Serious. What he does on social media takes 10 seconds to put up. He’s working hard. He’s been working hard for the last two months.”

Garcia hit back at his critics too.

“It’s right in front of your face! How am I going to miss weight? I am just a motherfucker on a mission,” he said.

“I am still here, I am strong, and I am ready to destroy him. If Devin doesn’t land face first, then I did something wrong.

“You can’t deny all the work that [coach] Derrick [James] and I have put in either. My technique is better, my hands are up, the chin is down – what do you all have to say?

“The social media is all just noise! I post something and then people think I’m crazy. I know what I am doing and I’m in the middle of a promotional fight.

“This is the most important fight of my career and I will not leave without the victory.”

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