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Spence Jr. vs. Garcia: Will this be a Nightmare Before Christmas?

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This Saturday, live on Fox Sports PPV we will witness one of the most anticipated fights of the year.

WBC and IBF Welterweight Champion Errol Spence Jr. (26-0) faces Philly’s own Danny “Swift” Garcia (36-2).

Aside from the anticipation, there is a level of intrigue surrounding this one as Spence Jr. is fighting for the first time since that horrific accident last year.

Here is a breakdown what you could possibly expect on Saturday night.

Danny Garcia

When it comes to Danny Garcia, he doesn’t have the quickest feet but he has one of the sturdiest chins in the division. Danny has been in there with some heavy hitters like Porter and Thurman but they weren’t able to get him out of there. In both of those fights, the decision was close and Danny couldn’t quite pull out the victory.

One of Danny’s most effective punches is the one that he doesn’t see through which is that left hook. Keith Thurman mentioned in some interviews that Garcia was the hardest he has ever been hit. If Spence at any point in the fight comes after Danny, that counter left hook may very well be there and that could determine how the fight proceeds.

Danny has to try and time those low left jabs that Spence tends to throw. A quick shift by Danny at these points could potentially leave Spence open for a hard counter shot. Danny has to be active and not allow his inactivity during those mid to late rounds creep up again, which would lead to another narrow decision loss.

Errol Spence Jr.

Photo Credit: Ryan Hafey/Premier Boxing Champions

When you think of a pure boxer/puncher, the name Errol Spence Jr. should come to mind almost immediately. When Spence is on his game, the left jab is what dictates his arsenal. Let’s not forget those ferocious body shots that he hits his opponents with, where he really digs in deep before throwing them. Spence’s counter-punching ability is overlooked at times and he could very well use it in this one if Danny comes in throwing a shot.

In this fight, I can see Spence Jr. being extremely cautious in the beginning of the fight. Let’s not forget it’s been about 13 months since the accident and there is going to be some ring rust in the beginning of the fight. Once he gets into the rhythm of the fight, you’ll see him press the action a little more and potentially outbox Danny Garcia to a 12 round decision.

The Unknown

The unknown is the most intriguing part of this fight and that is what is going to sell the PPV, which sells for $75.00.

In the wrestling world, it is often said that “the drama” of the story is everything and the match itself is secondary. When it comes to Spence vs Garcia, the drama of the story and the match are equally important.

Everyone knows that Errol Spence Jr. was in a terrible car accident last year that could have very well taken his life. See Spence in his hospital bed, soon after the incident.

It was really a miracle that he survived it without any major injuries. What everyone doesn’t know is what Spence Jr. has gone and continues to go through after the accident.

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder is a real thing and it affects more than just military members. Anyone who experiences something as traumatic as Spence did will have some sort of residual effects from the incident that do not heal with time.

The head scratcher was when he mentioned that the Garcia fight was booked, originally in November, prior to him being cleared from the doctor. I was really surprised to hear that as the only person that knows if he is ready is Spence himself. Speaking of being ready, he has said all of the things you want to hear but what happens on fight night?

Does the anxiety of walking to the ring become too much for him? Will a punch to the head trigger images from that night and affect how he performs?

No one REALLY knows, and Spence doesn’t either, which makes all of this THAT much more interesting.

I know people with PTSD and a sound or something that someone says can easily trigger those thoughts. That is the big unknown and it could potentially place Spence in a compromising situation. Let’s hope that doesn’t happen but we cannot ignore that it’s a possibility.

Spence has taken his comeback extremely serious and has added to his family this year. It’s an incentive to work that much harder and continue to provide for his family. From the looks of things, Spence Jr. seems to be in great shape and more dedicated than ever.

When thinking of the accident and come backs, I immediately thought of Vinny Pazienza (50-10). Vinny Paz had arguably the greatest comeback in sports history. He suffered a broken neck and came back just 13 months later to once again step in the ring.

Vinny Paz’ car accident was national news and most thought he would never fight again until he did.

This is after doctors told him he wouldn’t ever walk again let alone fight. Pazienza continued to fight after the comeback which went on for 12 more years. (If you are not familiar with his story, “Bleed For This” is on Netflix.)

My Three Cents

I absolutely love this fight and on the Woodsy Buzz Check Meter, I am at a 10. This is a unification fight between two world class fighters. Both men are class acts so either way, there will not be a loser in Saturday night’s fight.

Speaking of Saturday night, will this be “The Nightmare Before Christmas”? Will Spence Jr. only be a shell of his former self and lose his titles? Will Garcia come up short once again in a major title fight and simply retire? One man will leave the ring with both welterweight titles on Saturday night but who will be?

There is only one way to find out and that is to order Spence vs. Garcia on Fox PPV or purchase a ticket to see it live at the Dallas Cowboys Stadium in Texas.

You can follow me on twitter @abeg718 and follow @nyfights on Instagram.

Born and raised in the Bronx, New York City, Abe grew up in a family who were and still are die-hard boxing fans. He started contributing boxing articles to NYF in 2017. His club show pieces allow fans to see who is next on the horizon, and his training camp check ins are much anticipated. Abe can be found on twitter @abeg718.

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