2021 Boxing Betting Pick: Ryan Garcia vs Luke Campbell

The first big main event of 2021!

King Ryan Garcia will fight Cool Hand Luke Campbell for the vacant interim WBC Lightweight World Title this Saturday night from Dallas, Texas in front of a crowd!

Now, that’s how you kick off the year! Let’s get some glasses back in those seats. Oh, and God bless Texas.

King Ryan Garcia is touted as the future of boxing’s Lightweight Division but that is becoming more and more of a weight on his shoulders as the weeks and months pass. It was less than 3 months ago when we saw Teofimo Lopez put the entire division on notice with his dominant decision and world title winning victory over Vasyl Lomachenko.

There is also Devin Haney and don’t even get me started on Gervonta Tank Davis out of Floyd Mayweather’s camp. Unless Ryan puts on some more size and shows that he can take a punch with the best of them at 135, I have to give the edge to Tank.

Gervonta recently said in an interview that he would like to fight the winner of Garcia and Campbell.

This is such a massive step up in competition for Ryan. The kid is just 22 years old but has been looking scarier and less baby-faced lately. Okay, maybe scarier with some bigger muscles and more power but I don’t think this guy is going to lose his baby face until he’s 60.

  • Ryan has the look.
  • The attitude that people like.
  • Time will tell if he has the best attitude to become and stay a world champion.
  • He also has maybe the fastest hands in the division.

As I said, he is going to need them because the new breed at Lightweight can really crack.

Jorge Linares is still hanging around. He beat Campbell and dropped Loma. Haney looks like he could be great as well so the new breed with Davis and Lopez are making Lightweight the most interesting division in boxing for 2021.

Cool Hand Luke Campbell is 33 years old and only really lost to the best, the aforementioned Linares and Lomachenko. He is 20-3 in his career and even won a Gold Medal in the Olympics for his native United Kingdom in 2012.

His one loss we didn’t speak of, he avenged so it’s really just Linares and Loma who have bested him and he isn’t likely to get one of those back. Loma was too good and Linares too powerful.

Will King Ry be too fast?

We will see. BetOnline.AG has the betting odds for this matchup and an interesting prop that I am in love with upon first sight.

Let’s take a look at the moneyline, the round total, and that pretty little prop bride sitting there so pretty at (-150).

Ryan Garcia (-370) vs Luke Campbell (+300)

Round Total

Over 9.5 rds:
Under 9.5 rds:

Okay, it isn’t like Garcia has killer one punch power or anything because he is huge. I bet he doesn’t even have big hands. He has speed and timing over just about everyone he will ever fight.

This kid grew up on these new small rhythm punching bags and now just uses the heads of his opponents instead.

Personally, I think Ryan will actually benefit from Luke being a southpaw. Ryan loves loves loves to throw the check left hook and he would undoubtedly be swinging it a lot if Luke were right handed.

I don’t want him to rely on it right now especially taking such a big step up in competition. All he has to do against Luke Campbell is outwork him with his feet and that shouldn’t be an issue for the man 11 years younger.

Ryan also needs to be first and throw that right hand straight. We already know it will be timed well and have the speed on it. If he wins the footwork war, which he should, the right hand will be there.

At that point, speed kills. The check left hook is cool and all when it lands but it can leave you severely out of position when it doesn’t.

This is Garcia’s fight to lose and the betting odds reflect that. I can understand that Luke Campbell is a live underdog in the eyes of a lot of people but he will need a very dominant decision or a stoppage to beat the Golden Boy’s golden boy in ‘Merica.

Ryan is also training under the famed Chepo Reynoso. If that name sounds familiar, that’s because he is the head trainer for the best boxer on the planet, Canelo Alvarez.

As I said, I get it if you’re betting on Luke Campbell here to come into Texas from the UK, somehow in this global climate, ehem money talks, and win a decision against the promotion’s #1 young fighter.

Garcia does have a lot of growing up to do if you listen to him talk and I think he will do a lot of it in this fight.

He is so young that he is going to improve leaps and bounds in between fights that he may come out here and starch the Brit.

Then again, I can see him winning a unanimous decision as well but not without catching Cool Hand at some point. There is a prop available at BetOnline.AG on whether or not Ryan will drop Campbell.

Luke has been dropped multiple times in his career and even though I think he can go the distance with the kid from the fighting town of Victorville, California, I feel like Ryan is gonna put him on his butt at least once.

(-150) is the play. We could go after the round total but I honestly feel like they are a trap bet and have never done well with them.

We will go with Garcia to get the drop on his opponent at least once within the scheduled 12 rounds of boxing.

My Pick
Garcia will drop Campbell.

In Conclusion

Good for boxing! They aren’t wasting any time in 2021 getting after it with a very interesting matchup. King Ryan Garcia has over 8 million followers on Instagram and already 20 professional wins at the age of 22.

The guy even has a kid already. The young man is getting after it. I guess if I was a millionaire that popular who looked as good as him, well, I would be locked down too. Maybe it is best for him that he does have a kid and that will keep him grounded through his 20s which can be a very distracting time for a potential or world champion athlete.

Not much is being said about his opponent Luke Campbell and sorry Luke. Having a cool hand and a small mouth might make you more dangerous and less annoying but I don’t know if his ice is going to be enough to put out the fire that is King Ryan Garcia.

He is the A-side, he is the show, and if you listen to a lot of experts giving their insight like Teddy Atlas, they will tell you that it may not seem like it but the pressure is on the B-side in this fight. Luke Campbell is the fighter who needs to win here.

At the age of 33 and with the Lightweight Division rising as quickly as it is, the time is now or never for Campbell. He is also the Olympic Gold Medalist, the multiple time world title challenger, and 11 years the elder of his opponent.

Lightweight is more about speed than heavyweight, of course, so age is going to be more of a factor or should I say a factor earlier on in a guy’s career. 38 is old for a Heavyweight, 35 for a Middleweight, and 33 for a Lightweight.

Roughly speaking, that’s how it works. I don’t think he will have any reaction time problems simply because of his age but there will be a speed discrepancy of significant proportions and that should be the difference.

Ryan drops him at least once.

Mike Pruitt / Author

Mike has been covering sports professionally since 2017 but on the amateur scene for 25 years since when he was 12. Before the internet changed the world, he would keep detailed statistical box scores of NFL and NBA contests, write recaps, and voluntarily commentate games and fights alone in his room. Mike's military experience, Bachelors Degree, and employment thereafter were always rooted in engineering, science, and teaching. Now he enjoys being able to express himself through writing about football, golf, and car racing among other sports but most of all fighting as his life has been rooted in mixed martial arts including competing and teaching for the past 15 years.