Days before he enters the ring to fight in his hometown, undefeated Danny “Swift” Garcia opened up his DSG Boxing Gym to media on Wednesday as he prepares to face Colombia’s Samuel Vargas in the main event of Premier Boxing Champions on Spike Saturday, November 12 from Temple University’s Liacouras Center in Philadelphia.
On Keith Thurman being ringside on the Spike announcing crew…
“He will just get an up close and personal look at what will happen to him in March. I hope he’s paying attention.
“I am excited to give the Philly fans a great fight. This is an opportunity to give back and that is most important to me. I’ve been training really hard and I’m going to give 100 percent for my city.
“I am just going in the ring and be myself. Seek and destroy. I am taking this one round at a time. I’m looking to be smart and break him down. When the opportunity comes, I’m taking it and putting on a show.
“I am not looking past this fight. I have tunnel vision and have never looked past anyone. I know he is coming to win, but I am ready mentally and physically to get the job done.
“This is going to be a great night. It’s an exciting card from top to bottom. Young local fighters getting a chance to show their skills is great for the sport and great for Philadelphia.”
Q: What do you consider to be the best performance of your career?
Danny Garcia: The best performance of my career, I believe, was against Lucas Matthysse. I was the unified world champion, I was a 3-to-1 underdog, he was knocking everybody out. I don’t think one person in the world thought I’d win that fight, but I knew deep in my heart I was the better fighter.
Q: What’s your favorite punch in the ring?
DG: My favorite punch is actually my right hand, but for some reason the left hook knocks everybody out. So I don’t know, man. Whatever punch lands, I try to use all my punches and different weapons in different angles. I try to use each hand as the set-up punch for the next punch. So I don’t really have a favorite punch. A lot of people think it’s my left hook, I like the right hand better, but the left hook just knocks everybody out.
Q: Which opponent you fought hit you the hardest?
DG: The two strongest opponents I’ve fought with the best punching power were Kendall Holt and Lucas Matthysse. They kind of had the same kind of power. It was like a thumping shot, and when they hit you, you felt like “Ooh, this man can punch.”
Q: Who was the hardest opponent for you to hit in your career?
DG: The hardest opponent I had to hit was probably Lamont Peterson. He was moving a lot, he wasn’t trying to engage with me at all, was trying to use the ring a lot with lateral movement. He came with a good game plan.
Q: Who was the fastest opponent you’ve faced?
DG: Fastest fighter, hands down, Amir Khan. He is the fastest fighter I’ve ever fought.
Q: What was the best atmosphere you’ve ever fought in?
DG: Barclays Center is No. 1. I’d probably say the Zab Judah fight. We hold the gate (record), the most fans to go to Barclays for a boxing event. It was like a concert.
Q: When was the maddest your dad ever got at you during a fight?
DG: My dad is always mad. He’s happy sometimes, but when it’s fight time, he’s always mad. That’s all I can say.
Q: Are there any fighters you watched growing up who you style yourself after? Or are there any fighters out there who maybe remind you of yourself?
DG: I take a lot from different fighters. (Felix) Trinidad, I loved his left hook. Prince Naseem Hamed, I loved how he wore the animal print, and then I did that. Roy Jones Jr., Bernard Hopkins, those are fighters I looked up to. (Julio Cesar) Chavez, going to the body, that left hook to the body. I take a lot of things from other fighters’ arsenals and put it into my style. But I never try to be any other fighter. I try to be myself.
Q: When you meet him next March, where will Keith Thurman rank among the opponents you’ve faced in your career?
DG: Like I said, I’ve fought 10 current or former world champions in my career. He’s just another guy, another champ I need to dethrone. That’s basically it.
ANGEL GARCIA, Danny’s Father & Trainer
“Thurman may be on the outside looking in on Saturday, but he’s going to see what he has in store for him in March.
“Billy Briscoe (Vargas’ trainer) is another Philly guy like me and I know he’s going to try his best. But they’re fighting the champ and they know they have their hands full. He may think he knows our game plan but he really doesn’t.
“I’m excited for Danny to be fighting at home. It’s a great opportunity to give back. I’m expecting Danny to look great in the ring and get the win.”