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Mikey Garcia: 'I am ready to do whatever it takes' against Adrien Broner

Lightweight world titleholder Mikey Garcia returns to Brooklyn to face Adrien Broner in a junior welterweight bout Saturday night at Barclays Center. It's Garcia's third fight since his return to the ring last summer. Although he was sidelined for 2 1/2 years in his mid-twenties due to contractual issues with his promotion, the 29-year-old didn't miss a beat after the layover.

Flying past Elio Rojas with a fifth round stoppage last July, Garcia's second fight was even more devastating for his opponent, Dejan Zlaticanin. A clean uppercut and a huge right hand earned him a stunning third round knockout. Mikey reeled in a third division title. Now, Garcia (36-0 30 KOs) is back and fighting Adrien "About Billions"-turned-"About Boxing" Broner (33-2, 24 KOs) at junior welterweight. That's Broner''s lightest weight since 2013.

Mikey Garcia, right, hopes for a smart fight against Adrien Broner on Saturday. Photo provided by Ed Diller/DiBella Entertainment
"Even though I was away from real competition in the ring for two and a half years I was never away from the gym," said Garcia during a recent visit to the ESPN headquarters in Bristol, Connecticut. "It helped me stay in shape , stay active, stay sharp. I didn't gain weight like some fighter do and have a difficult time making it down to weight. I was never out of the ring. I was constantly working out, sparring. At times I was sparring up to 10, 12 rounds with different guys helping them getting ready for their fights. I stayed at a natural walk-around weight that I was comfortable. So, it made it easier for me to get back in the ring for a real fight."

Will that translate to a victory Saturday night?

"I am ready to do whatever it takes," said Garcia. "My brother (and trainer Robert Garcia) had told me, and my dad told me I got to be smart. Got to be smart. Can not be reckless because Adrien Broner is strong and he's real fast and he can counter you. So we can't overlook that. But at the same time if I have to put pressure and I have to be aggressive. I'm ready to do that in a smart way. And I can also box and use my legs. I can box from the outside if I have to or if I need to if it makes it easier for me. I am ready to do that also."

Garcia graduated from the Ventura County Police Academy in 2010. It's no surprise he displays an aptitude for disciplined training during camp and technique during his fights.

"Everything I do, I do right. Nothing too great or flashy. Nothing that stands out," Said Garcia. "But, what I do, I do right. Whether its fighting backwards or going forward. You know, I can time the distance, the ring. I can time for an attack. I can time to retreat."

Garcia also knows that underestimating Broner could be a big mistake. Broner, whose only two losses have been at welterweight against Marcos Maidana in 2013 and Shawn Porter in 2015, has since won three fights in a row.

"I know Adrien Broner is very focused for this fight from what I see and hear," said Garcia. "He's very determined to show everybody that he's back the way he was several fights ago. And on top of his game. He's had a few bad performances that he wants to erase. A victory over me will do that for him. But I am ready to do whatever it takes to win. Go forward with the pressure. Stay on the outside or stand in the center of the ring if I have to. That's what we are going to do."

Mikey Garcia isn't the only boxer in the family. His older brother and trainer, Robert Garcia, won a junior lightweight title when Mikey was still in elementary school. The question is, who does Mikey think is the better fighter between Robert and himself?

"It might seem like I have a better career. But my brother has great skills too," explained Mikey. "Back than the mental and the focus was not so much on prolonging a career. More just getting the fights. Getting the fans big fights. And great action fights. Let's get this knockout and show the fans we got the heart and that Mexican Machismo. That might have hurt his career and shortened it up."

Robert hasn't fought since 2001. He has devoted his full attention toward being a trainer. One of his disciples was Marcos Maidana, one of two men to defeat Broner. While Mikey and Maidana have different styles, Robert might nevertheless have the keys to defeat Borner again.

"We know Marcos had a different skill set. We know what Marcos can do and what he cannot do inside of the ring," Mikey Garcia said.

Maidana was told that relentless pressure and a noticeable lack of respect would help him defeat Broner, and the tactic worked. However, Garcia has a different skill set.

"I am ready to do whatever it takes. My brother and my dad they told me I got to be smart," said Garcia. "I've got to be smart. I cannot be reckless because Adrien broner is strong and he's real fast and he can counter you. So, we can't overlook that. But at the same time if I have to put pressure and I have to be aggressive. I'm ready to do that in a smart way."

For elite boxing fans, the showdown between Garcia and Broner constitutes another prime showing in a calendar year that has already yielded several excellent bouts. These include Andre Ward vs. Sergey Kovalev II, Keith Thurman vs. Danny Garcia, Anthony Joshua's victory over Wladimir Klitschko and Manny Pacquiao's controversial decision loss to Jeff Horn, among others.

Source: http://www.espn.com/boxing/story/_/id/20184563/mikey-garcia-ready-do-takes-adrien-broner

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