Golden Boy cools talk of Pacquiao-Garcia fight


Ryan Garcia’s dream of stepping into the ring to take on Manny Pacquiao will have to remain just that for now, according to his promoter.

Golden Boy Promotions, which promotes the 22-year-old Garcia (21-0, 18 KOs), told ESPN Knockout that a fight between the two isn’t in the cards.

“There’s nothing to talk about there,” Golden Boy executive Eric Gomez told ESPN. “They contacted us, but it turns out there’s nothing to talk about. That fight isn’t going to happen.”

However, Guadalupe Valencia, who represents Garcia told The Athletic that the door is still open for the fight to take place.

“We’re discussing terms,” Valencia said. “Manny and Ryan want it and instructed their teams to make it happen. That’s what we’re trying to accomplish.”

Garcia, the interim WBC lightweight titleholder who defeated Luke Campbell by knockout on Jan. 2, posted on Instagram this week a mock-up poster promoting a potential fight between him and Pacquiao.

“You get a call and somebody says, ‘You can fight Manny Pacquiao.’ What are you going to say to that?” Garcia told ESPN.

Valencia told ESPN on Friday that there is high interest in a non-exhibition bout between the boxers and mentioned the last week of April or first week of May as a possible date. Valencia said Pacquiao’s representatives reached out first to gauge interest.

However, Gomez said Pacquiao’s group was new to boxing, so there wasn’t anything to build on or discuss. He added that after he and Golden Boy CEO Oscar De La Hoya met with Top Rank’s Bob Arum, he considers lightweight champion Teofimo Lopez to be Garcia’s next potential opponent.

“Teofimo is more feasible,” Gomez said. “It’s one of the fights that’s obviously of interest to Ryan Garcia. It could be a great fight.”

Pacquiao’s last fight came on July 19, winning a split decision over Keith Thurman for the WBA’s welterweight title. The 42-year-old Pacquiao (62-7-3, 39 KOs) was designated a “champion in recess” Friday by the organization.

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