Unified junior welterweight champion Danny Garcia will defend his titles against Argentinean knockout artist Lucas Matthysse on September 14th on the undercard of the Floyd Mayweather-Saul Alvarez pay per view, Golden Boy Promotions announced on Thursday. The addition of Garcia-Matthysse creates one of the most anticipated cards in pay-per-view history.
The hype for Garcia-Matthysse has been building since May, when Matthysse -- with Garcia in attendance -- stopped titleholder Lamont Peterson in the third round in Atlantic City. It was the sixth straight knockout win for Matthysse (34-2), who hasn’t lost since a 2011 defeat to Devon Alexander. The win setup the showdown with Garcia (26-0), arguably the top fighter at 140-pounds.
"I'm glad I finally get a chance to fight Danny Garcia," Matthysse said. “This is the fight that the entire boxing world -- especially my country Argentina -- and I wanted. I want to thank my promoters Golden Boy Promotions and Mario Arano for making this fight possible. On September 14th, I will show the world that I am the best 140 pound fighter on the planet."
Garcia has quickly emerged as one of the biggest stars in boxing. After decisioning Erik Morales to win a vacant title in 2012, Garcia followed it up with a spectacular knockout of Amir Khan four months later. He knocked out Morales in a rematch last November and in April outpointed former titleholder Zab Judah.
According to Golden Boy Promotions CEO Richard Schaefer, Garcia pushed hard for a Matthysse matchup.
“This is the fight I wanted and the fight that I asked for,” Garcia said. “That is why I'm so happy this fight has been made and will be a part of this huge event. I'm more confident than ever in my abilities and I'm going to show it on September 14th. Matthysse is a good fighter and has a big punch, but I'm a talented fighter with what it takes to be a champion and stay that way. This is an opportunity for the world to see what I can really do in the ring.”
Mayweather-Alvarez was already expected to produce one of the biggest pay-per-view revenues in history, with the popular Mayweather getting a boost from a young star in Alvarez, who has a huge fan base in Mexico and the southwestern U.S. By adding Garcia-Matthysse -- which on its own would do a huge rating on Showtime -- to the card, the show could come close or surpass 2 million pay-per-view buys.
The fight could also be a showcase, with the winner in line for shot at Mayweather -- should he get past Alvarez -- sometime next year.
-- Chris Mannix