WBC welterweight champion Danny Garcia (32-0, 18 KOs) plans on being back inside the ring on September 24.
#2 WBC Andre Berto (31-4, 24 KOs) is the name that is being mentioned as Garcia’s possible opponent for Showtime Boxing, according to ESPN. Garcia reportedly turned down $4 million to fight against Manny Pacquiao for his November 5th fight.
Garcia hasn’t fought since winning the vacant WBC welterweight title last January against Robert “The Ghost” Guerrero by a 12 round unanimous decision. It wasn’t a pretty performance from Garcia, but he did the job against Guerrero in picking up the WBC belt that had previously been held by Floyd Mayweather Jr. before he retired.
Garcia needs to get back in the ring and start defending his WBC title because it’s already been six months since he won the belt. A fight between Garcia and Berto has been talked about. They’re both with Al Haymon, so it’s an easy fight to be made.
Berto recently kept his career alive with a 4th round knockout win over Victor Ortiz last April. Berto, 32, had to get up off the canvas in round two to come back to get the KO win in the 4th after knocking Ortiz down twice with big shots. Berto’s punching power looked good in that fight.
Berto was a lot more impressive against Ortiz than he had in getting outclassed by Floyd Mayweather Jr. in a one-sided 12 round decision loss last September. Berto looked like a shot fighter in that bout. Of course, he was facing Mayweather, and he has a way of making everyone look bad, but Berto looked far worse than some of the guys that Mayweather had been fighting in previous years.
You can argue that Berto hasn’t done nearly enough for him to be ranked at No.2 by the WBC. A win over the struggling Victor Ortiz was pretty much an empty win due to how badly Ortiz’s career has gone downhill since 2011. Berto’s record in his last eight fights is 4-4. That’s not the type of record that you like to see from fighters ranked at No.2 by a sanctioning body. It makes you wonder what the World Boxing Council sees in Berto to put him above guys like Shawn Porter, Frankie Gomez and Lamont Peterson. I believe those guys should be ranked above Berto right now. Of course, they don’t have the name that Berto has, but that shouldn’t be how fighters are ranked. They should be ranked on success, and Berto’s success has been shaky lately.
A lot of names have been mentioned as potential opponents for the 27-year-old Garcia. For some reason many of the top fighters in the 147 and even the 140lb divisions want a piece of him. They see in Garcia a popular fighter that has flaws in his game that would enable them to beat him. In contrast, WBA champion Keith “One Time” Thurman doesn’t have nearly as many fighters interested in facing him. That kind of tells you something about the threat perceived from the two champions. Thurman is seen as dangerous; whereas Garcia is seen as dangerous but definitely beatable.
A potential fight on the Garcia vs. Berto card is IBF junior middleweight champion Jermall Charlo (24-0, 18 KOs) vs. challenger Julian “J Rock” Williams (22-0-1, 14 KOs). This would be a great fight if it winds up on the Garcia-Berto fight card.