After a 20-month layoff, an introspective Danny Garcia made a successful debut in the 154-pound division Saturday night, successfully outboxing Jose Benavidez Jr. at Brooklyn’s Barclays Center.
Garcia (37-3, 21 KO) had been out of action since December 2020, but he showed very few signs of rust as he outboxed Benavidez from the early rounds. Benavidez (27-2-1, 18 KO) had very few moments of success throughout the bout, though he was able to hang for the full 12 rounds.
While not a thrilling fight, Garcia did show that he was sharp and healthy at super welterweight, even if he may be a touch small compared to much of the top talent in the division.
After 12 rounds of action, it seemed Garcia would be handed an easy unanimous decision win. Garcia ultimately had to settle for a majority decision as ringside judge Waleska Roldan scored the fight 114-114. Roldan was overruled by the cards of Glenn Feldman (116-112) and Tony Paolillo (117-111).
After the fight, Garcia spoke about his break from action, discussing how he needed to tend to his mental health.
“I still battle some days,” Garcia said of his current mental state. “I still have some dark days, but I try to stay positive. I feel good now. My dad was there with me the whole way. I’m nothing without this man. Because of him, I’m here.”