According to ESPN’s Mike Coppinger, Ryan Garcia will meet Isaac “Pitbull” Cruz in the ring next.
In a tweet on Tuesday afternoon, a letter obtained by ESPN said that the WBC has ordered a lightweight title eliminator fight between Garcia (22-0, 18 KOs) and Cruz (23-2, 16 KOs).
If no deal is struck, a purse bid will be held on June 14.
Garcia is coming off a unanimous decision win against Emmanuel Tagoe. Some boxing fans, however, were not that convinced of Garcia’s first win since a January 2021 TKO victory against Luke Campbell.
Garcia returned from a mental health hiatus.
Cruz is 1-1 in his last two fights. In his last outing, he snagged the win with a TKO victory over Yuriorkis Gamboa, who went down in rounds two, three and four.
That was Cruz’s first win since a December 2021 unanimous decision loss against WBA world lightweight champion Gervonta Davis. Cruz was the first boxer to go the distance with Davis in seven years.
Some boxing fans argued that Cruz had done enough to defeat the punching powerhouse.
The winner of Garcia-Cruz would be set up to face the WBC champion, who at the moment is Devin Haney. Haney faces George Kambosos Jr for an undisputed lightweight championship on June 5.