Matthysse, Garcia trading verbal jabs

Lucas Matthysse of Argentina is 34-2 with 32 knockouts. His first loss was to Zab Judah, a veteran who lost to Garcia in April.
Lucas Matthysse of Argentina is 34-2 with 32 knockouts. His first loss was to Zab Judah, a veteran who lost to Garcia in April. (JAE C. HONG / Associated Press)
Posted: September 10, 2013

Lamont Peterson, then a champion, wobbled a few steps backward in May before crumpling into the Atlantic City ropes.

The referee had seen enough, and Peterson's feeble attempt to rise from Lucas Matthysse's left hook was waived off.

Matthysse, now one of boxing's hottest names, needed less than three rounds to show how swift his powerful fists could turn a champion into just another fighter.

The 30-year-old Argentine is out for another big swing, one that will bring him bigger paydays, premier fights, and superstar status.

And Saturday night's opponent, Juniata Park's Danny Garcia, is out for the same. The 12-round bout at Las Vegas' MGM Grand will be for Garcia's unified light-welterweight (140-pound) titles, but it means much more than that.

Both hope that a win results in a fight against the winner of Floyd Mayweather vs. Canelo Alvarez - the main event.

Matthysse, through a translator, said he has "no worries" about Garcia.

"He's not a very good boxer," Matthysse said. "He's a fighter that's aggressive and comes forward just like I do. I like that."

He said he can take Garcia's left hook, the same one that Amir Khan, too, said he could take before being leveled last summer. If Garcia drops him, Matthysse said, he will get up.

"I'm not even worried about him," the 25-year-old Garcia said. "He's obviously scared if he's talking about me."

Matthysse (34-2, 32 knockouts) turned professional in 2004, and 25 of his first 28 fights were in South America. His first loss was a 2010 split decision in Newark, N.J., against Zab Judah, a fighter Garcia (26-0, 16 KOs) beat by unanimous decision in April.

Matthysse split his next two fights but has won his last six by stoppage.

He is working on his boxing but said he has not been able to show it because his opponents are always on the run.

And against Peterson he showed his newest accessory: a strong right hand that accompanies his devastating left hook.

That combination, Matthysse hopes, could be what again turns a champion into just another fighter.

"It's the fight of my life," Matthysse said. "And I'm going to take advantage of it."


Fight Night

The telecast will begin at 9 p.m. Saturday on Showtime pay-per-view from the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. Danny Garcia's bout will start about 10:30 p.m.

Ashley Theophane (33-5, 10 KOs) vs. Pablo Cesar Cano (26-3-1, 20 KOs), 10 rounds, welterweights.

Ishe Smith (25-5, 11 KOs)

vs. Carlos Molina (21-5-2, 6 KOs),

12 rounds, light-middleweights.

Danny Garcia (26-0, 16 KOs)

vs. Lucas Matthysse (34-2, 32 KOs), 12 rounds, light-welterweights.

Main Event

Floyd Mayweather Jr. (44-0,

26 KOs) vs. Canelo Alvarez (42-0, 30 KOs), 12 rounds, light-middleweights.


Contact Matt Breen at mbreen@phillynews.com. Follow on Twitter @matt_breen.

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