The two fighters have been in talks since Garcia contacted Haney’s team following his win over Regis Prograis. The one-sided victory made Haney a two-division world champion. Discussions over a fight with Gervonta Davis began initially over social media, but those failed as Davis’ plans appeared elsewhere. Garcia stepped up as he seeks his first world title. Garcia has just beaten Oscar Duarte, the first win under his new trainer, Derrick James.
A fight in Saudi is appealing for the following reasons. The Haney-Garcia fight is unlikely to generate big PPV numbers. Despite selling out the Chase Center, Haney’s fight with Prograis reportedly only did 50,000 PPV buys. Haney’s boxing style is also a reason for the potential low numbers. Out of his 31 wins, he only has 15 knockouts. His last stoppage was all the way in 2019.
The fight is also likely to take place on DAZN. The network has failed to make the significant impact it was hoping for with ESPN and PBC having bigger fighters on a global level. DAZN’s biggest attraction is Anthony Joshua, who currently has no world title.
Haney’s intention to fight in the Kingdom appears to be to secure a big payday. Saudi Arabia is willing to offer fighters big purses as Tyson Fury and Francis Ngannou secured their highest paydays for their crossover fight. The Fury-Usyk fight was agreed with both fighters getting a guaranteed purse without negotiating purse splits, which may explain Haney’s desire to fight in the region.
— Jed I. Goodman © (@jedigoodman) December 20, 2023
“We’re in negotiations [with Garcia’, but my dream is to fight here in Saudi,” Haney
Oscar De La Hoya has attempted to hype up the fight by claiming it will break ‘PPV records’. De La Hoya’s Golden Boy partners with DAZN, which makes it in his interest to talk up a Garcia fight. Before Garcia’s fight with Davis generated over 1.2 million PPVs, the boxer did not headline any PPV event. That has left a tough act to follow, which is why his fight with Duarte may have been taken off PPV. De La Hoya did his best to suggest it would do big numbers.
— Oscar De La Hoya (@OscarDeLaHoya) December 26, 2023
The social media response suggested the fight would not meet De La Hoya’s expectations.
Oscar wringing Ryan like a wet rag, tryna get every last dollar out of him before that contract expire
— Santi (@santiijsf) December 26, 2023
— Danny Zelaya דני (@therealdannyz) December 26, 2023
— Felix 🇲🇽🇲🇽 (@Felix51223307) December 26, 2023