By: Sean Crose
Rising lightweight Ryan Garcia returns to the ring on Saturday to face the veteran Javier Fortuna in a scheduled 12 rounder. The battle, which will be aired live on DAZN, will be the main event of a card hosted by Los Angeles’ Crypto.com Arena. Although the 43-3-1-2 Fortuna once held a WBA title, it’s Garcia who is the center of attention walking into this weekend’s bout. If Fortuna feels that everyone seems to be looking past him, he’s right. There looked to be more focus this week on a potential superfight between Garcia and Tank Davis that there was Saturday’s fight between Garcia and the less acclaimed Fortuna.
The truth, however, is that people might have good reason to put little faith in Fortuna’s chances this weekend. Aside from losing his chance to win a WBC title last year by virtue of being decisioned by Joseph Diaz, the man has also lost to the likes of Robert Easter and Jason Sosa. Throw in a draw and a couple of no contests and its little wonder the hard hitting, charismatic Garcia will be entering the ring as the A-side on Saturday night. Still, it would be unwise to dismiss the experienced Fortuna out of hand.
As for Garcia, the young Californian appears to be on his way to stardom – if he’s not there already. With millions of followers of social media, at least one major endorsement, adoring fans and movie star looks, the undefeated fighter seems as if he truly could be one of the sport’s next big things. Although he’s met no one truly of note yet, Garcia has – up until this point – proven that his bite is as big as his bark. While Garcia won his last bout by decision when he faced Emmanuel Tagoe last April, the fighter is known primarily as a knockout artist, having finished all but 4 of his 22 matches within the distance.