Calm, cool, collected, measured and intelligent. Mikey Garcia is all those things, for sure. But his showing against Juan Carlos Burgos left me wanting more as I watched 12 rounds of the main event at the MSG Theater on Saturday night. Garcia was patient, at times perhaps too patient, against a foe who looked to survive and neglected to press the issue and win rounds, for the vast majority of the night. The fight went the distance and the crowd, it must be said, sat on their hands for most of it. It was no thriller, and it will be up for debate as to why. The judges gave Mikey the nod, by scores of 118-110, 118-110, 119-109, for Garcia.
In the first, Burgos’ stiff jab and reach advantage stood out against the slow starter Garcia, who came in at 33-0. Burgos, the WBO super feather champ, entered at 30-1-2. In the second, a left hook caught Mikey backing up, and he almost went down, but he caught himself. In the third, a right cross clipped Burgos and he had to hold on. In the fourth, Mikey’s one-twos landed and scored, while Burgos wasn’t busy enough.
In the fifth, Burgos was backing up more rapidly. His jabs weren’t as snappy, and Mikey looked to close the distance. In the sixth, Mikey winged lead left hooks, and Burgos was busier than before, having heard it from his corner. The two men both showed caution, and didn’t open it up, and leave themselves open to be countered. In the seventh, again, neither man looked to separate themself. The crowd wasn’t jazzed at all.
In the eighth, Burgos wasn’t opening up, looking to win the round, so Mikey wasn’t inclined to open up either. In the ninth, a right hand over the top landed sharply, and it looked like Mikey was dialing it up a notch, perhaps. In the tenth, we too often saw single shots from Garcia, once again. He looked to land a power shot near the end but Burgos slid, and then grabbed.
In the 11th, Mikey was again his patient self, and Burgos his less than fiery self. In the 12th, the crowd booed some. We went to the cards, after a main event that will not be recalled for its excellence, by any means.
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