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Ever since the biggest win of his career 15 months ago, Ryan Garcia has been on a rocky journey. He took time away from the ring to work on his mental health, he got verbally blasted by Canelo Alvarez, and he parted ways with the 2021 Boxing Writers Association of America trainer of the year Eddy Reynoso. Now, it almost feels like Garcia is starting over against a solid but likely overmatched opponent in Emmanuel Tagoe on Saturday night. Here’s everything you need to know about Ryan Garcia vs. Emmanuel Tagoe, including the odds, their records and a prediction on who will win.

In January 2021, Garcia scored his most impressive victory by rallying to stop Luke Campbell. The fight showed that Garcia is a legitimate lightweight contender who can successfully navigate his way past trouble in the ring.

But even though he was scheduled to fight Javier Fortuna in July 2021, Garcia pulled out of the bout, because he said it was “important to manage my health and wellbeing.” Last November, Alvarez criticized Garcia for his supposed lack of discipline, saying, “He’s wasting a lot of time and wasting his talent. I look at him and don’t see him 100% dedicated and, to us, that’s a bad signal.”

Not long after, Garcia left Reynoso, who also trains Alvarez, and began working with famed coach Joe Goossen. Now, Garcia, who complained that Reynoso was largely absent when he was training, is satisfied with his coach. More than satisfied even.

“I knew Joe Goossen was going to be a perfect fit for me,” Garcia said. “He’s old school, and I love that part of the game. He’s someone I can relate to; we have good chemistry.”

Said Goossen: “I knew he had something special. We got along and there was something about him that appealed to me personality wise and fighting wise. He’s really attacking this like he’s obsessed and possessed. I’m genuinely impressed.”

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On Saturday, Garcia will get to show what he’s got against Tagoe, who’s on a 32-fight winning streak and who hasn’t lost in 18 years.

“I came here to knock out Ryan Garcia,” he said. “I think he’s good but he’s not my size. I can’t wait for Saturday. I’m going to show everyone.”

Here’s more info on the Ryan Garcia vs. Emmanuel Tagoe showdown that U.S. viewers can watch on DAZN beginning at 9 p.m. ET.

Ryan Garcia vs. Emmanuel Tagoe odds

Unsurprisingly, Garcia is a large betting favorite at -1800 (bet $1,800 to win $100), while Tagoe is the +775 underdog. I don’t care much for either money line, but I kind of like the +450 you’d be getting if Garcia wins by stoppage in rounds 7-12 (especially when you compare it to the -195 if Garcia wins by stoppage in rounds 1-6).

If you were looking for a fun parlay for this weekend’s action of boxing (and this is only for entertainment purposes), I would ignore Garcia vs. Tagoe. Instead, I might take Erickson Lubin to beat Sebastian Fundora at -150, Gennaidy Golovkin to beat Ryota Murata by stoppage at -163 and Gabe Rosado to beat Shane Mosley Jr. at -300. If all of those hit, you’d win $258 on a $100 bet. Oh, and a bonus: I think Tony Harrison (+200) will pull the upset on Sergio Garcia. If he does that and you add it to the parlay, it would pay an epic $975 on a $100 wager.

Ryan Garcia vs. Emmanuel Tagoe records

Under Reynoso, Garcia had really begun to impress, surviving an early knockdown vs. Campbell before storming back to stop him in the seventh. He also blasted out Francisco Fonseca in the first round. For Garcia, who is 21-0 with 18 KOs, those are his two best victories. But Garcia is on a five-fight knockout streak, and it’ll be interesting to see how Tagoe, who lost by TKO in his pro debut in 2004, will hold up to Garcia’s power.

Though Tagoe (32-1, 15 KOs) is relatively unknown, he is coming off a victory vs. Mason Menard, at one time considered a decent enough prospect. Yet, Tagoe hasn’t fought in 17 months (and just once in the last 31 months), and it’ll be interesting to see if he has any ring rust. “[Garcia] is fighting a guy who has nothing to lose,“ said Garcia’s promoter Oscar De La Hoya. “I think Ryan needs to come out and make a point but do it smart and careful.”

Ryan Garcia vs. Emmanuel Tagoe prediction

After joining up with Reynoso, you really got a sense of just how aggressive and powerful Garcia could be. I wonder if that will continue under Goossen. It might take Garcia a few rounds to get into the flow, but I think this will be a successful return for Garcia. Say, Garcia by stoppage in the seventh round against an overmatched Tagoe.

Source: Forbes

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