Friday, March 24, 2023  |



Ryan Garcia returns March 30 against Jose Lopez in Indio

Lightweight prospect Ryan Garcia (left). Photo credit: Tom Hogan/HoganPhotos/Golden Boy Promotions

Unbeaten junior lightweight Ryan Garcia will return to action on Mar. 30 against Jose Lopez, Golden Boy Promotions announced Friday morning.

The 10-round bout will take place at the Fantasy Springs Resort Casino in Indio, California. The fight will be streamed on DAZN.

Garcia (17-0, 14 knockouts), who resides in Victorville, California, knocked out Braulio Rodriguez in round five of his last fight on Dec. 15 in New York City. It was Garcia’s first fight working with trainer Eddy Reynoso, who also trains Canelo Alvarez.

In his previous fight on Sept. 1, the 20-year-old Garcia was coming off a 10-round majority decision win over contender Carlos Morales.

“I’m excited to come back for my first fight of 2019,” said Garcia. “We sold out Fantasy Springs last March when I knocked out Fernando Vargas, and I expect this fight to be exactly the same: a big win in front of a huge crowd. Let’s get this win.”

Garcia is the number one contender to face WBO junior lightweight titleholder Masayuki Ito. How likely Garcia will be to challenge for the title remains to be seen, as Ito has a co-promotional contract with Top Rank.

Garcia is also ranked number four by the WBA, and may choose to fight for another title.

“These are the kinds of fights (against Jose Lopez) that Ryan Garcia must win to become a world champion,” said Oscar De La Hoya, the CEO and chairman of Golden Boy Promotions. “He has all the makings of a global star, so it will be interesting to see how he can overcome this challenge. At the same time, Lopez is a tough fighter who really needs a win, so he’ll do anything he can to end Ryan’s undefeated streak.”

Lopez (20-3-1, 14 KOs) was stopped by Jonathan Oquendo in round six of his last fight on Oct. 6. The 24-year-old Lopez has lost two of his last three fights.

“I’m very excited for this opportunity,” said Lopez, who resides in Carolina, Puerto Rico and is promoted by Miguel Cotto Promotions. “Ryan is a great fighter and a top prospect at Golden Boy. I know the challenge that I have in front of me, and I am ready to make a great fight.”

As previously reported by The Ring, WBO junior flyweight titleholder Angel Acosta (19-1, 19 KOs) of Puerto Rico will defend his title against former world titleholder Ganigan Lopez (35-8, 19 KOs) of Mexico City in a 12 round bout.

Junior lightweight contender Eduardo Hernandez (27-0, 24 KOs) will make his debut under the Golden Boy Promotions banner when he squares off against Ibrahim Class (22-5, 10 KOs) in a 10 round bout. Hernandez is now co-promoted by Golden Boy and Promociones del Pueblo.

The 21-year-old Hernandez is ranked No. 10 by The Ring.

Junior welterweight contender Antonio Orozco (27-1, 17 KOs) will also fight on the Mar. 30 against an opponent to be determined. It will be the first time Orozco will fight since his unanimous decision loss to WBC titleholder Jose Ramirez on Sept. 14.

Francisco A. Salazar has written for since October of 2013 and has covered boxing in Southern California and abroad since 2000. Francisco also covers boxing for the Ventura County (Calif.) Star newspaper,, and He can be reached by email at [email protected] or on Twitter at @FSalazarBoxing