Unified Welterweight world champion Errol Spence Jr. (26-0, 21 KOs) faces two-division world champion Danny Garcia (36-2, 21 KOs) on the FOX Sports PBC Pay-Per-View main event, Saturday, December 5 from AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.
Below we will take a detailed preview of the highly-anticipated Welterweight matchup, and give a fight-night prediction.
TALE OF THE TAPE
|Errol Spence Jr.||Danny Garcia|
|Record||26-0, 21 KOs||36-2, 21 KOs|
|Hometown||Desoto, Texas||Philadelphia, Pennsylvania|
The tale of the tape shows this matchup to be 50/50 on paper. While most may lean to pick Spence Jr. as the clear cut favorite, this is another fight between two elite Welterweights.
Spence holds a slight advantage in size and reach, and is the younger fighter by two years. Garcia is the more experienced fighter with more rounds boxed and having competed in more title fights.
Both fighters have great power, and elite skills across the board, their measurables are fairly similar. Now let’s move on to the main storylines heading into this world title fight.
The Return of Errol Spence Jr.
As the boxing world is aware, Errol Spence Jr. survived a horrific car crash in October of 2019. Thankfully, he nor anyone else was injured in said crash, but this will be his first return to the ring since the accident.
We are unaware of his mental state coming into the Garcia fight after such an injury, but he looks and says he is in championship fighting shape. Is Spence Jr ready to continue his reign in the Welterweight division? This will be the biggest puncher Spence has faced, can he handle the power of Garcia?
Tthese questions will be answered on December 5th in the main event, with the pay-per-view scheduled to begin at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT.
Danny Garcia the Underdog
Garcia is familiar to title fights, and being the underdog as high as (+350) on some betting sites.
Garcia is 1-2 in title fights in the Welterweight division, with two close losses to Keith Thurman (29-1, 22 KOs), and Shawn Porter (31-3-1, 17 KOs). Both of which were tightly contested bouts that many could argue Garcia won.
Styles make fights, and these two have similar styles that will clash in the ring. Garcia has the opportunity to one again remind the world why he is an elite fighter, and can do so with a great performance in a loss, or an upset win against Spence Jr.
STRENGTHS FOR EACH FIGHTER
Errol Spence Jr.
Spence Jr’s strengths are his powerful jab, his body punching, and his punch accuracy.
Spence Jr. has one of the best jabs in boxing. Compubox punch statistics tell us that Spence Jr throws an average of 34.9 jabs per round, the fifth highest rate in boxing.
Spence utilizes that jab to keep opponents in his range, and work the body. We’ve seen him punish his opponents with body shots. This leads into his final strength of punch accuracy.
Spence Jr. is the most accurate puncher in boxing, he is the number one rated boxer in total punch connect percentage at 48% according to Compubox. He brings the total package of a stiff jab, body punching, and accuracy that his opponents haven’t been able to withstand.
Garcia brings his power punching, underrated defense, and a granite chin to the ring.
Garcia has a devastating left hook, and straight right hand that has knocked down, and knocked out many opponents. He is one of the hardest punchers in the division, and he does so with accuracy as well.
Keith Thurman felt Garcia’s power in their unification bout in 2017. Stating thankfully Garcia hit him in his arms and not his chin. He couldn’t raise his arms for two days, but if it landed on his chin, he wouldn’t have been able to withstand that power punch.
Danny Garcia’s defense is a strength. Garcia has a plus/minus of +9% according to Compubox. That is 20th in all of boxing, Garcia lands 32% of his punches, while his opponents land 23%. It is better than Spence Jr’s +8%, who is considered the best fighter in the division by many.
Garcia has never been knocked down in his professional career. A spectacular feat as he has been in the ring with some of the hardest punchers in boxing.
Keith “One Time” Thurman, Lucas “The Machine” Matthysse (39-5, 36 KOs) Brandon Rios (35-5-1, 26 KOs), Zab Judah (44-10, 30 KOs), and Amir Khan (34-5, 21 KOs) a tremendous body puncher. Whether to the body, or a flush punch on the chin, it is tough to hurt Garcia.
WEAKNESSES FOR EACH FIGHTER
Errol Spence Jr.
Errol Spence Jr.’s weakness are his defense, and the 15 month layoff between fights.
Spence Jr. had trouble with Kell Brook (39-3, 27 KOs) and Shawn Porter’s boxing abilities. Ultimately, Spence did knock down both fighters en route to wins in each fight.
We won’t know if the layoff as well as the car accident will have any effect on Spence Jr. in the ring. His performance against Garcia will tell, but 15 months away from the ring is bad for any fighter.
Garcia’s weaknesses in the ring continue to be his low-punch output, and his footwork.
Garcia has a very bad tendency to not throw enough punches in a lot of his fights. While his accuracy is a strength, this remains to be a problem when his opponents are visibly outworking him.
Garcia’s a flat-footed power puncher that has problem with fighters that are quick on their feet. Keith Thurman, and Shawn Porter displayed that with their movement and boxing from range.
Garcia failed to be able to connect enough punches resulting in his close title fight losses. Spence Jr. likely won’t be bouncing around the ring. However, it may be smart to implement some movement into this gameplan to stay away from Garcia’s power.
THE WINNER AND WHY
This might be the toughest fight to predict in 2020. While Spence Jr. may have been the easy choice before the car accident, and extended lay off.
These factors now turn the fight into a clear cut 50/50 toss up.
Spence Jr. should utilize is stiff jab, and longer reach to keep Garcia in his range. This would help Spence stay away from the power punching of Garcia.
Errol Spence Jr. walks away with his titles strapped around his waist in another tightly contested title defense.