American boxer Ryan Garcia has made a startling comeback to defeat British rival Luke Campbell and claim the interim WBC lightweight title.
Gracia was dropped for the first time in his career during the second round of their highly-anticipated bout at Dallas’ American Airlines Center.
But the 22-year-old steadied himself and fought back to secure the title via TKO at the 1:58 mark in the seventh round.
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The decisive blow came with an inconspicuous body shot, which sent Campbell crumbling to the floor, spurring the referee to wave his hands and end the contest.
It was a stunning recovering after the second round knockdown, where a vicious left hook sent Garcia to the canvas.
Strwp a rocket 🚀 to the Garcia kid…. #GarciaCampbell pic.twitter.com/jVDVgGtNCy
How to destroy your liver in one easy trick (featuring @KingRyanG) #GarciaCampbell #Boxing pic.twitter.com/BKTSQVAG86
“Yo, I got dropped. It was crazy!” Garcia yelled after the victory.
“I’ve never been dropped in my life. I got a little too excited about the moment. I wanted to crack him and he cracked me. I had to adjust. I knew I could beat him. I had to show everyone what a warrior is really like.”
Garcia was simply too quick for his 33-year-old opponent, who was saved by the ball in the fifth round when he stumbled into the ropes following an well-directed right uppercut.
“He was very worried about that hook coming,” Garcia said. “He thought I was going up top and I changed direction real quick.
“I think I showed a lot of people who I really am. They wanted to call me a social media star. You aren’t who people tell you who you are, you are who you choose to be.”
The hype is real. Ryan Garcia is the real deal. That speed, skill and power at 22 is scary. The kid is very, very special. #GarciaCampbell
Ryan Garcia is the business 👏🏼 Had an inkling Campbell was a step to far, but he’s the real deal, great watch. #GarciaCampbell
Make no mistake about it, that’s a huge, huge win for Ryan Garcia.
He was taken into deep waters, recovered and registered a huge stoppage victory.
There’s still some work to do to sure up his game, but you can strap this kid to a rocket ship now. #GarciaCampbell
Sports journalist Chris Slater tweeted: “I think the reaction of Garcia and his team tells you everything there. He knew he was in a fight. Great effort from Campbell. Just a shame he couldn‘t get out of the pocket quick enough. Unbelievable punch to finish it.”
Sports reporter Aaron Stokes posted: “Ryan Garcia – very impressive to pick himself up after that 2nd round knockdown and dominate the later rounds of the fight. Incredible body shot to win it.”
Garcia’s unbeaten record extends to 21 professional bouts, with 18 KOs. By claiming the interim title, he becomes the mandatory challenger to WBC champion Devin Haney.
FULL CARD RESULTS
Ryan Garcia defeated Luke Campbell via TKO (R7)
Roger Gutierrez defeated Rene Alvarado via unanimous decision (113-112 x3)
Felix Alvarado defeated DeeJay Kriel via TKO (R10)
Raul Curiel defeated Ramses Agaton via TKO (R2)
Sean Garcia defeated Rene Marquez via majority decision (38-38, 39-37 x2)
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