Garcia prepares for a challenger he faced long ago

Posted: July 04, 2014

NEW YORK - When the father and trainer of world light-welterweight champion Danny Garcia forgot challenger Rod Salka's name at a news conference Wednesday at the Barclays Center, the boxer clutched his name card and raised it toward Angel Garcia.

"Sada, socka, sacka," said Angel Garcia, trying to correct the pronunciation. "I'm a sock-a you."

Danny Garcia said his father never remembers anyone's name. The 26-year-old from Juniata Park will defend his WBA and WBC titles in the Brooklyn arena on Aug. 9 against Salka. Garcia defeated Salka in the 132-pound final of the 2005 Pennsylvania Golden Gloves tournament, and he said that's all he knows about his Pittsburgh-area opponent.

"At the end of the day, Aug. 9 is Danny Garcia's show," he said. "And no matter who comes to fight, it's going to be my show."

Angel Garcia's actions may have been disrespectful, but Salka said he couldn't care less. The 31-year-old (19-3, 3 knockouts) served a decade in the Air Force and has had limited exposure; he has been self-promoted for most of his career.

Salka signed in November with Golden Boy Promotions, the same organization that promotes Garcia, and has won four of his last five fights.

"They can think whatever they want to think about me," Salka said. "I bust my [butt], I work hard, and I got myself to this point."

Garcia (28-0, 16 KOs) was seated next to Lamont Peterson, who is scheduled to fight Edgar Santana. The 30-year-old Peterson holds the IBF light-welterweight title and seemed to be a likely opponent for Garcia after a convincing win in January. Instead, the two champions will fight on the same card against less-regarded competition.

"I really don't know how the matchmaking goes; that's not what I do," Garcia said. "My job is to show up fight night and give my fans a great fight. That's it."

The Garcias said they would like this bout to be the champ's last at 140 pounds. He plans to fight once more this year, which could mark his debut in the 147-pound welterweight class.

In his last outing, Garcia struggled in Puerto Rico against Mauricio Herrera but pulled out a split-decision victory. He said Salka is "going to pay" for the way Garcia fought that night.

"Danny's focus on the next fight is to destroy," Angel Garcia said. "Come in, conquer, and destroy. You're going to see the difference from Puerto Rico and Aug. 9."


mbreen@phillynews.com

@matt_breen

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