Ryan Garcia is one of the best known boxers in the world, right now.
The 25 year old California native has a showy resume, the Ryan Garcia boxing record of 23-1, 19 KOs tags him as one of the game's best of class young guns.
The Ryan Garcia bio. He turned pro in 2016, at age 17, and his punching power stood out pretty quickly. More and more people came to know about father Henry, mother Lisa, brother Sean, and the heart-throb repping Victorville, CA, on the southwestern edge of the Mojave Desert.
His looks, too, commanded attention. The handsome hitter got on radar screens as his aesthetic appeal made him a magnet on social media.
Ryan Garcia Is Confident, Some Thought Cocky, Back in 2016
Turn back the clock, to October 2016….you had the on-the-come-up 5-0 pugilist gaining his sixth win by stoppage.
If you were on the “KingRy” train, you were aware that he at the time sifted offers from promoters, and that he’d sign on with Oscar De La Hoya. “We share that left hook, and I see some similarities on how I could build in same weight classes he did, and go all the way up. I feel like I could do that, and maybe go beyond him,” Ryan Garcia stated.
With more attention came more scrutiniy, and, so Ryan Garcia became a topic of discussion on social media message boards and the like. That profile boost came with downsides, arguably.
A pack of doubters tagged Garcia a creation of this social media age, and doubted the hype as it bubbled up.
While he rose the ranks, it weighed on him, the expectations and pressure, more than it appeared.
More acclaim, and pressure, appeared on Dec 28, 2017. That’s when Dan Rafael chose Garcia as ESPN’s 2017 Prospect of the Year. Our Colin Morrison proved prescient when he wrote that “2018 should be a big year for Ryan Garcia.” NYF clued you in on the rising attraction, and his father/trainer Henry in 2017.
More Pressure For Ryan Garcia Now As Prospect of the Year
Eyeballs kept on finding the 15-time national amateur champ; on May 4, 2018 he headlined versus Jayson Velez decent vet on a Golden Boy card in Carson, CA, and on ESPN3, as a step-up. He won, but his stoppage streak ended, giving those critics something to yap about. We wondered aloud, Does his popularity exceed his talent?
Garcia beat Velez, Carlos Morales (17-2-3 entering), and Braulio Rodriguez (19-3 entering) in ’18, and found himself in headier territory come 2019. He also started training with Canelo tutor Eddy Reynoso, after being taught by his papa.
While some sniped that this kid received more attention than he deserved, Garcia kept fighting, and stopping foes.
Jose Lopez (20-3-1 entering), then Romero Duno on Nov. 2, 2019.
Behind the scenes, alliances were tested and new ones formed and then dropped: Ryan Garcia now better realized what it felt like to really be getting what you asked for.
Envy boiled, with some folks not digging the reality that Garcia sifted offers for modeling gigs as his win streak continued. Doubters didn’t dig his confidence and were dismissive of his overall skill set.
And yes, doubters were tuning in to see if someone would finally knock Ryan Garcia off his perch.
Didn’t happen—but behind the scenes, drama reared its head. Ryan Garcia fought just once in 2020, beating 25-2-2 Francisco Fonseca on 2-14-20. NYF covered that event.
Of course Covid impacted the sport as a whole heavily, and 2021 saw Garcia fight only once. That outing, a win over boldfaced name Luke Campbell, didn’t shut all the doubters–plenty hated his confidence level– but a TKO7 triumph stood as his career-best victory to that point.
Outside the ring issues needed to be attended to, with some of the pressures of fame coming to the fore. Issues with galpals, with promoter De La Hoya, etc, accumulated.
Mental Health Issues Impact Ryan Garcia
In April 2021, Ryan Garcia announced he’d not be fighting Javier Fortuna for a title, instead he’d be focusing on his mental/emotional health. There’d been talk of Ryan Garcia facing Manny Pacquiao, and behind the scenes, differences of opinions between ODLH and Team Garcia popped up, again and again.
13 months passed, and Garcia worked on his head, rather than his trade.
Critics said that Ryan Garcia was soft, then sniped “see I told you so” when Ryan Garcia went the distance with survivor Emmanuel Tagoe (32-1) on April 9, 2022.
He’d admitted that his depression got so bad he contemplated killing himself. That admission got greeted with a good deal of goodwill from many within the sport, like Teofimo Lopez.
Ryan Garcia, now at 140 after 135 got too tough to make, contended with the out of the ring pressures, didn’t implode like some naysayers predicted, and set his sights on a super fight, with Gervonta Davis after bettering Javier Fortuna, on July 16, 2022.
Critics and Ryan Garcia die-hards rejoiced—this would be THE opportunity to see the real Ryan Garcia. He projected massive confidence that he’d stay undefeated against the thunder-punching Baltimore young gun.
The promotion will be looked back upon as a heavy highlight for the year in boxing 2023, even if it will be recalled differently for young Garcia, who experienced now what it feels like to have a defeat on your permanent record.
Ryan Garcia vs Gervonta Davis, Young Guns Collide
That event played out poorly on fight night for 23-0 Ryan Garcia, as the 28-0 Davis used his eagerness against him. At T-Mobile in Vegas, Tank sent Ryan to the floor in round two, and finished him in round 7. Our Gayle Falkenthal covered the action.
Garcia drew praise even from some haters, who liked that he sought out a stern challenge, in Gervonta, which contrasted with so many supposed stars dodging and ducking tough tests.
NYF admits to seeing Ryan Garcia in a positive light, factoring in his handling of a strange version of super stardom, his vulnerability in dealing with his mental health issues, and how he acted after losing. Plus, Ryan Garcia is good for the boxing news business, as compelling matters of drama waft around him much of the time. Not all agree.
Ryan Garcia Seeks Bounce Back Win
Boxing is perhaps trying to move beyond the “winning isn’t everything, it’s the only thing” mentality, which sees boxers fiercely protecting their 0, and avoiding coin flip bouts.
Young gun Ryan Garcia has been a potent voice in reversing some of that Floyd Mayweather influence on the game. Garcia gloves up on Saturday, Dec 2 against relative unknown Oscar Duarte (who?) a changed man.
He's spoken of his acceptance of losing, his resolve to bounce back hard, and the joy of competing, over love of money. Reads to NYF like Ryan Garcia is someone who is helping boxing stay in the entertainment mix, and providing role model lessons on how to handle fame and fortune and everything that goes with it.