Thursday, September 21, 2023  |



Brandon Rios splits with trainer Robert Garcia

Fighters Network

Robert Garcia (left) and Brandon Rios in happier times. Photo by Naoki Fukuda

If Brandon Rios is going to continue his boxing career, he’ll have to do so without his long-time trainer Robert Garcia.

Garcia announced on his Instagram account that he is no longer training the former WBA lightweight titleholder Rios, saying that Rios’ father Manuel Rios will take over training duties for the 29-year-old’s career.

“Regarding my brother Brandon Rios, I am no longer training him,” Garcia, himself a former junior lightweight titleholder, wrote.

“We talked and both came to an agreement that if anyone else should train him it should be his dad.”

Rios (33-3-1, 24 knockouts) had trained with the Oxnard, Calif.-based Garcia since turning professional in 2004, winning the WBA lightweight title together in 2011.

Rios has struggled in recent years since moving up in weight, losing three of his last five bouts, including a ninth round technical knockout loss to Timothy Bradley in his most recent bout in November.

Along the way there was his damaging trilogy with Mike Alvarado, whom he beat twice, and a one-sided decision loss to Manny Pacquiao in 2013.

Rios announced his retirement after the Bradley loss but promptly unretired shortly after. He admitted in a Facebook post that his commitment to training had waned.

“I didn’t train right last time & was not able to bring my best, letting myself & my fans down,” Rios wrote.

“Now I’m back at the gym getting in shape, before I even do training camp, with a renewed passion for my sport & fans. Strong basics and some new twists to up my game and when it’s time to end on my terms of hard work and victorious.”

An email requesting comment from Rios through his wife Vicky Rios was not yet returned at time of publishing.

Under his father, Rios won the featherweight title at the U.S. National Championships in 2004, and was named an alternate on the Olympic team that competed at the Athens Games.

You cannot compare Robert Garcia to my dad, Manuel Rios. I’m going to tell you why,” Rios was quoted by BadLeftHook. “My Dad did a great job, he got me where I needed to be in the amateurs. He took me very far and honestly he was the best at that job. He took me as far as to have Robert Garcia notice me and take me to the professionals.”



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