Let not the hindsight of the ensuing days beguile you and lead you toward the cowardice of cynicism. For those who held the required insight to recognise the inevitability of Spence’s victory, don’t belittle your wisdom with memes today. Garcia came, tried, lost and whilst he may have sacrificed the Autumn of his career in one bout, only time can try to prove that conclusion, he did at least distinguish his character in the process.
The frustration we feel at the lack of progress in the Welterweight division shouldn’t be laid on Garcia’s shoulders. He’s already wearing enough unproductive baggage without carrying the burden of a weight class luxurious in millionaires and starved of ‘he who dares’.
As we reflect on a fight that revealed a little more of the prowess and poise of Errol Spence and the grit and defiance of Garcia, the elephant in the room, that the Welterweight leaders are reluctant to fight each other, was the greatest takeaway.
In a division which should be illuminated by marquee match ups from which lasting greatness could be found, much like their heavyweight contemporaries, too few of the important fights are being made.
Too many words have already been spilled in the explanation, justification and definition of the intricacies of the sanctioning body, media platform and promotional maze the 10 and half stone division is lost within. Boxing is a sport of action not words and we must be grateful at least that Garcia was willing to step beyond the rhetoric, admittedly for a career high purse, to search for the type of definition to his career he believed his talent deserved.
At 31 the cruel truth of boxing, the one so many of his contemporaries try to ignore, may insist that the seminal night he craves remains beyond him. Garcia, for all his ability and courage, may be forced to look back on Salido as his career best victory. It doesn’t seem enough.
But it may have to do. Lightweight, where Garcia may be at his optimum, contains a certain Ukrainian against whom another opportunity to chase greatness exists but with whom his prospects are greatly diminished by the bloated visit to 147.
Legacy is a slippery quarry.