Five defining moments of Ryan Garcia's career

Ryan Garcia is a once-in-a-lifetime fighter.

Yet, he hasn’t won a world title in his career.

At 25-years-old, Garcia is a social media icon. This weekend, December 2nd, Garcia looks to rebound from his first loss. Garcia is coming off a knockout loss to Gervonta Davis. He will be facing Oscar Duarte. Duarte is a career lightweight moving up to junior welterweight for the opportunity.

Here is what you should know about Ryan Garcia’s career so far

The Early knockouts

Garcia has eight first-round knockouts. Add to it, he has six second-round knockouts. That is fourteen knockouts in the first two rounds.

Garcia became the name he is, based on his performances. The excitement he brings to the ring. Garcia is a puncher, and that is what people want to see.

The purist will see the flaws, the average viewer will see the flash. As with a lot of young fighter who get promoted, it starts with a lot of knockouts.

The huge social media following

Garcia came of age during a rising tide of social media. Social media went from an afterthought of major companies to big business. Garcia saw the future even at 17-years-old and invested in himself. As Garcia grew his fanbase bigger than his promoter after a few years.

Often getting flack early on for making ‘viral’ content. The ends justified the means as Garcia is now a fighter with a huge following

Garcia is a fighter who looks like a model, who is getting highlight-reel performances. Weird juxtaposition often goes viral. This is part of the Garcia success formula. A fighter who looks like a Disney channel actor getting brutal KOs. Often matched well against perfect opposition. Yet, stopping Romero Duno in one round is no small feat.

He didn’t lose his major tests on the come-up

Garcia had three major tests going from a prospect to a contender. First, it was Jayson Velez, a seasoned veteran who fought him close. Garcia won the fight, but it wasn’t a flashy performance.

Then it was Carlos Morales. A fight he won by majority decision, yet was hurt in. Garcia has a major flaw of pulling straight back, but his gifts of power and speed prevailed. When many fighters would've lost, Garcia won.

His final stern test was 2012 Olympic gold medalist, Luke Campbell. Garcia got dropped. Garcia got off the deck to stop Campbell. Campbell would retire after the fight. The bout solidified Garcia as a contender, yet until this year big fights didn't come.

Garcia has won his 'big fights', but looked very human in doing so. While fighters of the past like Mike Tyson would blow out their competition. Garcia has a bad habit of making tough fights a bit too close for comfort. Part of this is based on some technical flaws that he has not refined.

Garcia relies on athleticism, speed, and power over technic. This can be his downfall.

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Changing camps

Garcia has a habit of changing gyms. He trained with his father, Henry, until a shaky performance against Carlos Morales. Garcia defeated Morales by majority decision but got hit clean a lot.

Garcia moved to Eddy Reynoso, Canelo’s trainer, and began his next act. Garcia’s choice of trainers has also seemed to correlate to an astute business sense as well. Garcia has opted for trainers who have grown his fame along with his skills. One could even argue the fame part more than the skills.

Garcia would win five fights with Reynoso over the course of three years and then leave. The split also came a few months before Canelo Alvarez lost to Dmitry Bivol. Garcia would train with Joe Goossen, a veteran trainer. Goossen would work with Garcia for three fights. This included a huge pay-per-view fight with Gervonta Davis. Yet, Goossen was not at Garcia’s post-fight press conference. Now, Goossen is no longer Garcia's coach.

Garcia’s fight on Saturday will be his first with Derrick James. Best known for his work with Errol Spence Jr., and Jermell Charlo. Both of whom suffered bad losses this year. James is entrusted to resurrect the career of Garcia.

Meanwhile, Garcia’s father, Henry is the only constant. It seems Garcia is not looking for a long-term coach. Rather someone who can fill a void in his current situation. Or a cynic might say, a famous coach who might keep him relevant.

Madonna was able to reinvent herself with wardrobes and looks. Garcia seems to have reinvented himself with new coaches over the past few years.

Gervonta fight

Garcia was largely unproven. Yet, he stepped in April and did a lot of the heavy lifting for the Gervonta Davis pay-per-view to get made. Garcia came in at 136 lbs. It seems junior welterweight is his optimum weight.

The bout sold over a million pay-per-view buys. The gate made an astronomical amount of money as well. Garcia knows how to market. Garcia knows how to sell. Yet, we don't know if he is a world-class fighter.

After two rounds, Garcia stated he got 'bored'. This led to a knockdown, which evitably saw him getting stopped with a body shot.

We learned about Garcia's toughness. We learned that he is a competitor. Yet, we don't know where he rates amongst the best at junior welterweight.

Seeing Garcia in with Davis was one of his stronger showings despite a loss. We still have unanswered questions about Garcia moving forward. Is Garcia a fighter who is being guided by his viability to be a big draw at the box office? Or is Garcia a fighter who needed to grow, and have highs and lows to get to this point?

No one knows. The one thing we do know is the Davis fight will be a major moment in his career arc. For better or worse.