Eight months after getting stopped by Gervonta “Tank” Davis in the first PPV headlining fight of his career, Ryan Garcia isn’t taking a soft touch in his first time back in the ring. Though Oscar Duarte doesn’t have the resume of a championship-level fighter, he might just have the kind of knockout power that could cause painful flashbacks for Garcia. Here’s everything you need to know about Ryan Garcia vs. Oscar Duarte, including the odds, their records and a prediction on who will win.
In April, Garcia faced off against Davis, got knocked down in the second round, and then got leveled by a nasty body shot in the seventh that ended Garcia’s night. The disparity between the two was evident. Davis was elite. Garcia, at least on that night, was a level or two below that.
Now, Garcia, who made $30 million for the Davis matchup that drew about 1.2 million PPV buys, has brushed himself off, and he’s looking to resume his career. He could have been forgiven if he would have chosen a light-hitting opponent with a breakable chin. Instead, he chose a power puncher who only has one loss in his career.
“If I expect to become a champion, I can’t take easy fights and think that’s going get me there,” Garcia said. “I knew that Oscar was a challenge. He’s fast. He’s strong. He’s got good timing. It just made sense for me, this fight, to show what I could do to prepare me for the bigger fights.”
But controversy continues to follow around Garcia.
Though his promoter, Oscar De La Hoya, praised him at a recent press conference, saying Garcia has a “champion’s attitude” and that he “wants to make a huge statement,” Garcia’s public spat with De La Hoya and Golden Boy has been rather ugly.
It seems that the two sides are heading for an eventual breakup, especially when De La Hoya is sending out social media messages like this.
De La Hoya eventually deleted that tweet, but that was in response to Garcia and Golden Boy executive Bernard Hopkins sniping at each other this week and with Garcia saying Thursday, “It’s very clear they’re backing [Duarte] to beat me.”
Duarte, meanwhile, seems to be comfortable in his spot.
“I’m going to win and I’m going to be the next idol in Mexican boxing with the preparation that I am doing,” he said. “I have a big rival in front of me, I have an incredible team behind me. They are my strength, and I am ready for the big challenges ahead of me. This is my best moment for me, not only physically but mentally too.”
Here’s more info on the Ryan Garcia vs. Oscar Duarte showdown that U.S. viewers can watch on DAZN beginning at 8 p.m. ET on Saturday.
Ryan Garcia vs. Oscar Duarte odds
If you want more proof that Duarte isn’t expected to be a pushover, look to Garcia’s money line of -400 (bet $400 to win $100). It shows that the oddsmakers don’t think Garcia is an enormous betting favorite, and since Duarte is +300 (win $300 on a $100 wager), there might not be a ton of value if you’re looking to bet on the underdog’s money line. If you like Garcia, I’d probably take him to win by stoppage at -150, and if you think Duarte will give him a good fight in the early going, you could also grab Garcia to win by stoppage in rounds 7-12 at +200.
If you were looking for a fun parlay for this weekend’s action of boxing (and this is only for entertainment purposes), I might take Garcia to beat Duarte at -400, Michael Conlan to beat Jordan Gill by decision at +210 and Floyd Schofield to stop Ricardo Torres at -500. If all of those hit, you’d earn a $365 profit on a $100 wager.
Ryan Garcia vs. Oscar Duarte records
Up until his fight vs. Gervonta “Tank” Davis, Garcia (23-1, 19 KOs) had a perfect record. Now, of course, he has one in the loss column. Even though he fell far short against Davis, Garcia has some solid victories, including stoppages against Javier Fortuna and Luke Campbell and a decision win vs. Francisco Fonseca.
Though Duarte is fairly anonymous, he’s built a nice record of 26-1-1 (21 KOs), and his biggest win, at least in retrospect, came in 2018 vs. Roger Guitierrez when Duarte decisioned the future junior lightweight world titlist. Duarte lost his very next fight vs. Adrian Estrella, and since then, Duarte has feasted on mediocre competition against opponents you’ve probably never heard of. Still, Duarte has scored 11-straight stoppages.
Ryan Garcia vs. Oscar Duarte prediction
Despite all the distractions, Garcia should fare fine against Duarte. I expect Duarte to have some success early, but after the first couple of rounds, Garcia will take over. Eventually, Garcia’s power will catch up with Duarte, and Garcia will stop him in the later rounds. Say, Garcia by TKO in the eighth round.