Ryan Garcia’s left hook collapses Fernando Vargas into defeat


INDIO, CALIFORNIA — Headlining his first card as a professional, Ryan “KingRy” Garcia showed that his right hand is not the only tool in his arsenal, as he connected with a multiple shot combination that ended with a left hook that had Fernando Vargas’ (no, not THAT Vargas) legs collapse beneath him into a loss on the latest edition of Golden Boy Boxing on ESPN.

In front of a sold-out crowd and the legendary Julio Cesar Chavez — who was the guest of honor at Fantasy Springs Casino — the 19-year-old Garcia remained calm throughout the first round, as he mentioned that he wanted to display his boxing skills in this matchup. Vargas (33-14-3, 21 KOs) had more than double the fights than Garcia and had even fought for a world title just under two years ago in a TKO loss against Jaime McDonnell.


“It was my first 10-round fight and the dude has experience, so I expected some rugged fighting,” Garcia said. “But if I see the shot opening, I can’t let it slip. It was there and I took it.”

With the victory, Garcia (14-0, 13 KOs) will likely land a fight on the undercard of the rematch between Saul “Canelo” Alvarez and Gennady Golovkin on May 5, which will only increase his exposure to a higher level. Oscar De La Hoya, head of Golden Boy Promotions, believes Garcia can be a superstar in the sport. The Victorville, California native Garcia has a self-confident and brash attitude that, along with his fighting style, has garnered him large attention at an early stage in his career. Fans have already called for a fight with former 130 pound world champion Gervonta Davis and both athletes have even exchanged verbal jabs with each other on social media.

Assuming the victories keeping flowing as time progresses, Garcia is on track to land a world title shot sooner rather than later, and could eventually find himself across the ring from a name such as the WBC super-featherweight world champion Miguel Berchelt. This would be a big step in competition for the young Garcia, as Berchelt (33-1, 29 KOs) has held the title for over a year now and has no intentions of letting it go lightly. Nevertheless, Garcia is enjoying this recent win and will likely find himself in the gym within the next few days as he has to remain prepared for his possible May bout.

“I called it, I spoke it into existence,” Garcia said of his early finish of Vargas in the first round. “I felt nervous because it was my first main event. I was feeling the nerves, but once I landed my strong jab, I felt good.”

Danny Z is a contributing writer for and is also the co-host of the SoCal Boxing Report Show on NBC Sports Radio. Follow him on Twitter @DannyZ_Boxing

About Albert Baker

Writer/Producer/Director of the Under the Hand Wraps documentary series and owner of Albert Baker is currently based in Fresno, California and has been covering boxing since 2014.

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