By Jack price @PriceyJ97.
I think it's fair to say that nobody was expecting what happened in the ring between Orlando Salido and Mikey Garcia at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas last night (January 19th). We were all expecting a close competitive fight between two evenly-matched boxers, but what we got was a one-sided victory from the man that had never really been tested. That's right, 25-year old Mikey Garcia dominated and out-classed ring veteran Orlando Salido to win the WBA featherweight championship of the world.
Right from the off it was clear that Garcia meant business. Salido found himself down twice in the first round. They weren't damaging shots coming from Garcia, but they were fast, sharp and they were definitely troubling Salido. This trend continued for the next few rounds with Salido going down twice more and never really getting into the fight. The 32-year old grew more and more frustrated as he found himself in a position he had never been in before. Salido has been hurt, troubled and beaten on many occasions but he's never had it where he just can't get to a guy. Every time he put the pressure on he was either spun or just made to miss.
Unfortunately the fight ended in chaotic circumstances at the end of the 8th round after an accidental headbutt from Salido broke Garcia's nose. Thankfully, and rightfully, the fight went to the judges scorecards and Garcia was announced as the winner.
Words cannot sum up how impressed I am with Mikey Garcia after this fight. I hadn't really seen much of him before. All I'd heard is that he was another decent up and coming fighter who looked promising for the future... Nobody told me he could fight like this!
At the young age of 25 he already looks like a seasoned veteran and he has just beaten the No.1 featherweight out there. He looked comfortable at all times, which is rare to see from a fighter in the ring with Salido, and showed that he has the skills and power to compete with any guy in the world right now.
Salido was in most people's top 20/30 pound-for-pound lists before this fight, so where does that leave Mikey Garcia? I think he definitely has to be considered in the top 30. The only thing you could put against him is that Salido may have "grown old over night." But even if this was the case, it was still a fantastic performance.
There are some great fights out there for Garcia and he seems like the type of guy that will embrace any opportunity that comes his way. He is a real student of the game and just loves to fight. With years left in his career, he has plenty of time to learn, improve and become even better than he already is. The future looks very bright for this young man!