Hector Luis Garcia: I don’t consider Chris Colbert particularly dangerous

Hector Luis Garcia faces Chris Colbert in WBA super featherweight world title eliminator live from The Chelsea inside The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas on Saturday, February 26. Undefeated Dominican Olympian took the bout against unbeaten contender on a short notice, replacing Roger Gutierrez, who was forced to withdraw after a positive COVID-19 test.

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Boxing fans can watch the fight live stream on Showtime. International live stream is expected on FITE TV – subject to confirmation.

Tickets for Chris Colbert vs Hector Luis Garcia can be purchased through TicketNetwork.

‘I don’t consider Chris Colbert particularly dangerous’

“I’m very thankful to my whole team for giving me this opportunity,” said Garcia, who owns a record of 14-0, with 10 knockouts. “It’s time to show the world that there was a Dominican fighter hidden in the shadows and he’s ready to pounce on this chance.”

Garcia stepped in to face Colbert after WBA super featherweight champion Roger Gutierrez withdrew due to a positive COVID-19 test. Despite the sudden change, the 30-year-old is prepared for what the supremely-skilled Colbert brings to the ring.

“I don’t consider Chris Colbert particularly dangerous,” said Garcia. “I’ve watched him fight before and I know that I do have to be agile, since he is very fast. I have been sparring with many training partners that have styles similar to his here in Las Vegas and that should help me adjust once we’re in the fight.”

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Trained by renowned coach Ismael Salas in Las Vegas, Garcia has sparred with champions and top contenders including Devin Haney and Rolando “Rolly” Romero. He enters this fight coming off the most impressive victory of his career, an unanimous decision triumph over Isaac Avelar in December 2021.

“I make sure I stay in shape even if I’m not training for a specific date or opponent,” said Garcia. “I heard about this opportunity when I got back to Las Vegas from the Dominican Republic, and I just knew I had to grab the bull by the horns. I am making sure that I make the most of this by having the best possible preparation.”

‘I can hurt you with anything and everything that I throw’

The San Juan de la Maguana, Dominican Republic product knows this is his chance to go from underdog to world championship contender, and plans to show off his versatility and power in the biggest fight of his career to date.

“People will witness my potential on February 26,” said Garcia. “They are also going to find out that I can brawl or be tactical from any kind of distance. If I had to define myself as a boxer in one word, that would be ‘versatile’. My power is a weapon because I can hurt you with anything and everything that I throw.”

Garcia is an avid Boston Red Sox fan who used to play baseball and dream of home runs at Fenway Park while admiring Domini hitting baseball legends such as Pedro Martínez, David Ortíz and Manny Ramírez. His family wanted him to study, but it was his stepbrother who turned him to boxing when Garcia was a teenager.

“Baseball was my first love, but my older stepbrother Derlin Valdez used to box and he would encourage me to do the same,” said Garcia. “He kept telling me to go to the gym and, when I was 14, I decided to heed his advice and dedicate myself to boxing. I didn’t really want to at first, but I also didn’t have the resources I needed to be a true professional baseball prospect.”

‘My goal is to be a world champion’

Garcia turned pro in December of 2016 after a runner-up finish at the 2015 Pan-Am Games in Toronto and qualifying for the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.

“I waited for the (2016) Olympics before turning pro,” said Garcia. “My dream was to win a medal, and I didn’t get to because of an unfair loss during the preliminary rounds.”

Six years later, boxing is still a family matter in the Garcia household. That is what drives him to succeed.

“My goal is to be a world champion, and I’m dedicated to showing my family that I am indeed able to be successful as an athlete,” said Garcia. “They wanted me to study, study, study and study some more, but I’m showing them that I achieved my goal.”

In the co-feature to Colbert vs Garcia, Gary Antuanne Russell faces Viktor Postol in a ten-rounder at super lightweight. Kicking off the telecast Jerwin Ancajas defends his IBF junior bantamweight title in a twelve-rounder against Fernando Martinez.

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