3/10/2018- San Antonio- Riverside’s unbeaten Mikey Garcia, (37-0-30K) collects titles the way some folks collect trading cards. In a heated contest for the IBF Jr. Welterweight title against the forever dangerous champion, Sergey Lipinets (13-0-10K), Garcia had to stay on his p’s and q’s. Lipinets has a somewhat awkward style that prevented Garcia from becoming overly aggressive. Constantly dipping to his right to avoid Mikey’s big shots, Lipinets was able to nail Garcia often with sneaky shots. I read in some quarters, that Garcia was a 20 to one favorite. Those odds were obviously set by someone that doesn’t know sht about tha’ game. The champ landed enough sneaky shots, that he was able to bust up Mikey’s nose as early as the second round. This was one of those bouts that had you expecting a bomb to explode any minute.
The struggle went back and forth with each guy ‘gettin’ his. Mikey was able to start getting to the champ in the second, landing several one two sets. But he was always mindful of the impending danger. On several occasions, Mikey had his head snapped back from jarring shots from Sergey. This was a good fight to cap off the weekend, where it seemed like EVERY fight consisted of Jr. welters. In the seventh, both guys traded left hooks but Garcia’s was on the chin, dropping Lipinets for the first time in his career. He was able to beat the count and was right back in the rumble. The champ, with only 13 fights on his slate was a very dangerous and formidable foe, but the ability to adjust was missing. The contest went the distance with Garcia capturing a unanimous decision (116-11/117-110/117-110) which was about right. Afterwards, Mikey called out everybody except Deontay Wilder. After the fight, Garcia announced he was going to Belize (?) to build some houses. Uh, Mikey, there are PLENTY of places to build houses for poor people in Cali.. When he made the announcement, camera hunter, Sam Watson wanted to know if they had cameras in Belize. I’m serious, this dude can find that camera no matter WHERE they put them. He ALWAYS makes a point to stand right over the ring announcer’s shoulder, where he KNOWS that’s where the Red light is aimed.
In the semi, for the vacant (what else) WBA Jr. welterweight title, Long and lanky Rance Barthelemy (26-0-1ND-13K) found a perfect spot to learn a lot of his shots, under Kiryl Relikh’s testacles. At one point Rance bent his knees and fired a straight right DIRECTLY at Relikh’s cajones, making NO attempt to act as if it was an oops moment. For the most fight Relikh (21-2-19K) gave Rance a thorough boxing lesson. Kiryl forced the action and was declared the winner, there were no knockdowns and the final tally was (117-110/118-109/118-109.