Lightweight world titleholder Mikey Garcia is reportedly in negotiations to sign with UFC president Dana White and his new Zuffa Boxing Promotions; sources told FightNights.com Thursday afternoon.
We reached out to Garcia's team, but they declined to comment on the potential deal.
The news comes as negotiations are ongoing for Garcia to take on IBF 135-pound titlist Robert Easter for a late summer showdown at Staples Center in Los Angeles.
Garcia (38-0, 30 KO's), who trains in Riverside, California, has not fought in the Los Angeles area since he scored a fourth-round knockout of Rafael Guzman on the undercard of Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. vs. Sebastian Zbik in June 2011.
There are a lot of dynamics for Garcia and his team to consider before signing with White. First and foremost, who else is on their radar? Secondly, how can White guarantee that he can get Garcia the big fights that he wants?
That will be a critical factor in Garcia's decision, but he has done pretty well for himself even without a promoter. So what can White bring to the table to convince Garcia, who notably lost two years of his prime due to a promotional dispute with Top Rank, to come back into that web?
White has traditionally made the best fight the best, and that is great on paper. However, in the martial arts world, White has no competition. He is the president, every weight class has one champion, and he makes all the calls.
Boxing is completely different as far as the number of promoters, sanctioning bodies, and television networks. But it may not deter Garcia, who is known as a risk taker.
Garcia is a four-division world champion. After capturing featherweight and super featherweight world titles, he moved up to 135-pounds and scored a third-round knockout of Dejan Zlaticanin in January 2017 to win the WBC belt. Then, Garcia moved up to 140-pounds, and easily defeated former world titleholder Adrien Broner in a unanimous decision last July. The 30-year-old captured the IBF junior welterweight world strap with a points victory over Sergey Lipinets, but has since vacated the title.