SAN ANTONIO – Thursday’s final press conference ahead of the Ryan Garcia vs. Emmanuel Tagoe fight went off without nearly as much drama as Wednesday’s open workout.
San Antonio’s own world champion boxers — brothers Joshua Franco and Jesse Rodriguez — attended Thursday’s event at the Alamodome.
“It’s nice. Ryan, he’s a big draw, so to bring this to San Antonio is good,” said Franco. “San Antonio is a boxing city so there’s a lot of support here.”
Rodriguez added, “San Antonio is going to show out for sure.”
Rodriguez, who won his world title belt in February, is familiar with Garcia, who is being groomed to be boxing’s next big superstar.
“I came up with him in the amateurs,” Rodriguez said. “When he walked in he said “Hey Bam, how ya doin’,” so he still recognizes me so that’s pretty bad---.”
Both Franco and Rodriguez have Garcia winning on Saturday. Franco believes he will win by unanimous decision. Rodriguez thinks Garcia wins by knockout.
THAT WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP FEELING
The 2-1-0 has been blessed to have world champion caliber boxers call San Antonio home.
Franco is the defending WBA Super Flyweight world champion. Franco’s younger brother, “Bam” Rodriguez, is the defending WBC Super Flyweight world champion.
“It’s a blessing, two world champions in the family, at the same time, same weight class, it’s something that we dreamed of,” said Franco. “We went through our struggles so to see it happen for the both of us, it’s a blessing.”
“It happened last time, we were just chilling together and we’re like, ‘man, this is reality now, we’re both world champions at the same time,” added Rodriguez. “This is what we always dreamed of and we’re not going to let anyone take this away from us.”
ON DIFFERENT STAGES
Boxing fans will have a local fighter to cheer for on Saturday night. Jefferson High School alum Gregory Morales will be in the ring for his first fight this year. Morales, who once crossed the stage at graduation in the Alamodome, will now fight in the dome for the first time in his career.
INSIDE THE RING: @JoshuaFranco_ & @210bam are excited for the fights with @RyanGarcia and S.A.'s own @DonGoyo210_ in the Alamodome tomorrow! #KSATsports #boxing #boxeo— KSAT 12 Sports (@InstantReplaySA) April 8, 2022
MORE: https://t.co/MGTtWcDo8D pic.twitter.com/wm7MwBRk22
“Coming up with him, for him to get recognition on a Ryan Garcia card here in San Antonio, it’s pretty dope,” said Rodriguez.
Franco added, “We grew up with Gregory since we were little. It’s good to see him with Golden Boy, he’s happy so that’s good, that’s good.”
Gregory Morales - 125.8lbs— Golden Boy (@GoldenBoyBoxing) April 8, 2022
Katsuma Akitsugi - 125.4lbs pic.twitter.com/vB0PT9cBTC
Saturday’s undercard bouts begin at 3 p.m. in the Alamodome with the main card broadcast set to begin at 8 p.m. on DAZN.
Daniel P. Villanueva has worked with KSAT 12 for over 18 years and is an award-winning producer. To submit story ideas, email email@example.com.