Jump to content

Joshua chooses Robert Garcia as trainer for heavyweight title boxing rematch against Oleksandr Usyk


Recommended Posts

By Mike Coppinger, ESPN

 

Anthony Joshua will be trained by Robert Garcia for his heavyweight title rematch with Oleksandr Usyk on July 23 in Saudi Arabia, sources told ESPN.

 

Garcia, the boxing writers' 2012 Trainer of the Year and a former 130-pound champion, coaches out of Robert Garcia Boxing Academy in Riverside, California, but will train Joshua in England, where the fighter is based, sources said.

 

Joshua (24-2, 22 KOs) was soundly defeated by Usyk via unanimous decision in September and afterward went on a tour of U.S. gyms as he sought to find a trainer he meshed with. Among the trainers he visited: Virgil Hunter, Eddy Reynoso, Ronnie Shields and Garcia.

 

Robert McCracken, the only head trainer Joshua has had in the pros, is no longer part of his team, sources said. McCracken also led Joshua to a gold medal in 2012 as the head coach of the Great Britain Olympic boxing team.

 

Joshua, ESPN's No. 4 heavyweight, will attempt to become a three-time champion when he meets Usyk in the rematch. The 32-year-old was upset by Andy Ruiz Jr. in June 2019 via seventh-round TKO, but rebounded to outpoint Ruiz six months later in Saudi Arabia to regain his three titles.

 

Garcia, 47, has guided 14 boxers to world titles. Among them: Marcos Maidana, Abner Mares, Jose Ramirez, Brandon Rios, Brian Viloria and his brother, Mikey, who captured belts in four divisions.

 

The Mexican American is well-regarded for his game plans and tactical adjustments. Garcia teaches a pressure style, and many of his fighters are well-versed with roughhouse tactics. Maidana, who was crude when he linked up with Garcia, upset Adrien Broner to win a welterweight title.

 

Joshua, who held significant strength, height, weight and reach advantages over Usyk, curiously sought to outbox him under the guidance of McCracken. The strategy didn't work. Usyk, a fellow Olympic gold medalist, is a far superior boxer.

 

Those who favored Joshua believed he could use his superior size, strength and power to bully Usyk and either score a late stoppage or win via decision. Under Garcia, Joshua could attempt to apply nonstop pressure and lean on Usyk in the clinch.

 

______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

 

Seems an odd fit to me. Garcia's not experienced with heavyweights at all. Bit desperate on AJ's part imo.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

By Mike Coppinger, ESPN

Seems an odd fit to me. Garcia's not experienced with heavyweights at all. Bit desperate on AJ's part imo.

 

 

I agree.

 

Garcia is a great offensive trainer, no doubt, but that aggressive, high output style his guys all have requires a LOT of energy and stamina. That's not typically found above 200 lbs, and certainly not found in AJ.

 

This will be interesting.

 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Joshua needs to fight aggressively and make his size advantage count. Garcia is a good fit for this. McCracken's tactic of outboxing Usyk was a complete failure.

 

- - Usyk with a Frankenstein mug was busting up for the ref stoppage until Josh got his eye busted in a perfect shot by Usyk.

 

The demise of Josh is really the demise of boxing fans, but yeah, Josh needs to return to being the big bully Knock'em sideways and out. Usyk struggled with Chisora pressure, so that's the Josh blueprint.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Joshua needs to fight aggressively and make his size advantage count. Garcia is a good fit for this. McCracken's tactic of outboxing Usyk was a complete failure.

 

 

He definitely needs to use his size and power advantage, if Garcia can figure out how against the extremely mobile Usyk.

 

- but if AJ fights aggressively, he's toast. He has terrible stamina, even by HW standards. Again, that's why I think Garcia is a terrible choice.

 

 

 

I think AJ should just retire, smoke lots of weed, drop some acid, and start a rock band.

He could call it "The Grateful I Had a Career at All."

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 month later...
No doubt they'll both come out saying they had great camps. Usyk's in Poland so don't expect many media poking around. AJ in California so more potential for some buzz leaking out, but yea fighter camps tend to held in strict secrecy, especially ahead of fights of this magnitude. But let's face it, boxing doesn't make many headlines anymore until fight week arrives. Perhaps Britain is an exception; that's why AJ based himself far enough away to stay focused. Boxing simply doesn't get the attention it once did. Promoters are expert at controlling narratives. The press are merely sheep that follow.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...

- - Coming up like a runaway freight train this Saturday in Jeddah Superdome, but nary a peep out of fighter camps and nary a pic with Robert training his new pupil, Josh.

 

Even Fast Eddie has slowed down to tranquilizer level dialogue. Guess he feels the heat of his cash cow Josh needing a win after Canelo deflated in his last fight. I let my DAZN lapse since I couldn't get reliable streaming, and when I did, the gauntlet of muting the rotating cast of "boxing experts" whilst trying to understand what was coming next and then have it not come because of streaming failures, it wasn't worth it any more.

 

Picking Josh, but oh my, major respect for Usyk, the two clear #1&2 heavies in boxing. Now that Blubber has retired and unretired umpteen x, the 6 yrs disgrace of the Ring Belt is now being up for this fight.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Seeing another Usyk win here. He's the superior boxer and tactician. Don't see AJ figuring him out; hiring Robert Garcia kinda out of the blue desperation move that may only give AJ too much information to process in a short time and backfire. Regardless of the result we'll be hearing from Fury again to set up a match the winner. Warning: as I mentioned in another thread, the potential for the winner to face Fury makes me wary of Hearn's influence. AJ-Fury would be worth far more than Usyk-Fury; if Usyk-AJ II goes to points, be prepared.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

......hiring Robert Garcia kinda out of the blue desperation move that may only give AJ too much information to process in a short time and backfire.

 

 

Good point. New muscle memory takes YEARS to fully integrate. If AJ thinks too much in there, he'll be even worse than last time.

 

I see an easy win for Usyk.

 

AJ will come out aggressive, Usyk will use his mobility, and AJ will start gassing by round 5 or 6.

Then Usyk, who is now probably heavier than before, and more importantly more used to fighting at this weight, will turn it on and expose AJ for what he always was. (or wasn't)

 

 

I suppose Usyk might have slowed a bit, seeing as he's 35 y-o now, but given AJ's stiffness this won't likely be a factor.

Edited by Cableaddict
  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

--- Now, now, boys, "they" said Usyk was gonna get robbed in London and that didn't happen.

 

"They continue to say Josh has no stamina, but "they" have no bout as proof. Josh fought a FOY type of slugfest with Wlad who was also falsely cursed with no stamina by "they," so take the word of "they" with a barrel of salt.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

--- Now, now, boys, "they" said Usyk was gonna get robbed in London and that didn't happen.

 

 

They certainly TRIED to rob him. Did you see the scorecards?

 

Usyk messed up their plans by clearly winning every round. And still we had 116-112 and 115-113.

 

 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...
Posted (edited)

As a postscript Garcia seems to be distancing himself from any responsibility for the loss. BTW six days after Usyk-AJ II there was Garcia in Stockton, California standing in the corner of one of his fighters - the first fight of the card, a 4-rounder. Garcia knows what butters his bread. He's more than just a trainer; he's a brand, a corporation. Had AJ won he'd have taken credit. In losing he couldn't have done anything more. He's got a brand to build and protect. It's on AJ that he wasn't better.

Oleksandr Usyk was ‘mentally stronger’ than Anthony Joshua: AJ’s trainer

By Michael Rosenthal, BoxingJunkie
Anthony Joshua’s trainer said his fighter was “mentally defeated” by Round 10 of his split-decision loss to heavyweight titleholder Oleksandr Usyk last Saturday.

Robert Garcia told Izquierdazo that Joshua came close to winning the rematch in the ninth round, when he seemed to hurt Usyk, but the Ukrainian’s ability to bounce back in the following round gave Joshua only a puncher’s chance down the stretch.

Usyk won the final three rounds on two of the scorecards and two of three on the third card, which gave him the victory. He won 116-112, 115-113 and 113-115.

“Joshua was mentally defeated since round 10 or 11,” Garcia said. “Round 10 was a big one for Usyk. That changed the whole fight, and mentally we were defeated. At that point, we were relying on a good shot or something like that, because Anthony is a hard puncher, and one shot can change a fight.

“That is what we were hoping for, one shot, because he (Joshua) was dominated at that point of the fight.”

He went on: “The fight was going well for us, but the 10th round changed everything. The last three rounds of the fight were the ones that changed the fight. In the ninth round we were close to winning, perhaps even by knockout. Through Round 9, we were winning the fight on the judges’ scorecards, but it was decided in the last rounds.

“Usyk is a great fighter, with a tremendous heart, who knows how to finish strong, like champions do.”

Garcia said he believed Joshua would win the fight as he watched the ninth round. In retrospect, he thinks Joshua might’ve expended too much energy in an effort to finish off Usyk.

“During that ninth round, me and the guys in the corner were telling to ourselves that we had the fight,” Garcia said. “But nothing is secured until the final bell. Usyk came back stronger in the 10th round, and that changed the fight. I have even thought in these last few days that it was Anthony Joshua who mentally defeated himself.”

“In the ninth, Joshua threw a lot of punches, and almost put Usyk out,” he added. “Maybe, he emptied out, but maybe it was just that Usyk came stronger and more motivated to the 10th round, we don’t know.”

In the end, Garcia said, the fight came down to determination.

“In this fight, I think that Usyk was mentally stronger,” he said. “I think he was stronger, to the point that after being close to a knockout, instead of giving up, he came back stronger. His will and his desire to demonstrate to his country that he couldn’t let himself lose the fight, made him come back.

“He wanted to give a message to his country, for everything that is happening there. He is a big inspiration for them (Ukrainians). His mind was what made him turn the tide in the fight and get him to victory. And I think that Anthony’s mind is a bit weaker than Usyk’s, because instead of going out stronger, his mind and exhaustion play games with him.”

 

Edited by The_budweiser
  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Do wonder if Joshua sticks with Garcia or not. Hopefully, the talk of him being back-out November/December are true. Also, the talk of 3 to 4 fights next year. Get back out there knocking Heavyweights out. Not many quality contenders around but have no problem with him knocking over fringe contenders and working with his trainer.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 8/27/2022 at 12:58 PM, Ledhed1 said:

 

“Usyk is a great fighter, with a tremendous heart, who knows how to finish strong, like champions do.”

 

 

Ouch.  Garcia really knows how to throw a back-handed dis !

I'd say that pretty much ends any chance of him staying with team Joshua.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...