Mikey Garcia defeats Robert Easter, Jr. to unify lightweight titles, wants Errol Spence Jr. next

Saturday night Mikey Garcia made strides toward putting his name in the conversation for top pound-for-pound fighters with his unification of lightweight titles with his defeat of previously unbeaten Robert Easter Jr.in unanimous fashion ( 116-111, 117-110, 118-109) .

After a slow start, Garcia seemed to eventually solve the problem of the 5-inch height and 8-inch reach advantages that Easter Jr. had. Garcia’s power counter punching sent Easter Jr. to the canvas in the third with a straight right/left hook combination.

I like to stay patient early on and figure out my opponent. He had a great game plan which was to use that reach and I had to figure out the timing and finding that range that suited me best. Once I started getting that rhythm, it started to work.We wanted to land that right hand. I landed it and caught him on the chin with a left hook as he was backing up. It was a perfect punch on the chin. – Mikey Garcia

He was just a better man tonight. I take my hat off to Mikey as he was a true champion and a true warrior. Whenever we step into the ring, we both put our lives on the line and Mikey was victorious. I just couldn’t find the timing and I couldn’t let it go.- Robert Easter Jr.

To his credit, Easter showed heart and composure in recovering from that knockdown, however his output was lessened over the second half of the fight. CompuBox numbers have Garcia outlanding Easter Jr. 176 to 129.

Once the fight was over, Garcia was quick to discuss his next mission- moving up to divisions to welterweight and challenging Errol Spence Jr. :

“I’m here for the biggest challenges. I don’t know if there is anybody else who is a bigger challenge than Errol Spence Jr. If we are going to fight [it will be] at welterweight and I want to challenge myself to the fullest. I know he’s up to fight any fighter so that’s what I want. I’m keeping my fingers crossed and I think that’s the next big fight that can be made. I feel that I have the power and the skill set to compete in any division up to welterweight. He’s the toughest guy at welterweight, the most feared man, so I want to challenge myself against him.

Spence, who is the IBF welterweight champ, was at ringside and had this to say about Garcia’s callout:

Definitely I want that fight,” Spence said. “I feel like that’s the best fight available for me right now with Danny Garcia and Shawn Porter fighting each other in September and Keith Thurman still needing a tuneup. [Garcia] wants to be great so he is going to move up and try to dethrone me but it’s not going to happen.

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