FRESNO, Calif. — Sandor Martin was supposed to be nothing but a roadblock to Mikey Garcia securing bigger fights against the likes of Regis Prograis, undisputed junior lightweight champion Josh Taylor and Gervonta Davis.
However, Martin had other plans in mind, as he pulled off the massive upset, winning via majority decision to the shock of everyone at Chukchansi Park. Garcia looked tentative throughout the bout. More often than not, he didn't pull the trigger when he had Martin either in the corner or against the ropes, and was sluggish for a good portion of the fight — which you could attribute to Garcia (40-2, 30 KOs) competing for the first time since a February 2020 win over Jessie Vargas. Overall, the performance wasn't what many were expecting from the former four-division world champion.
Disappointment was the primary word used to best describe Garcia's showing and it's a sentiment that Eddie Hearn, who promoted Saturday's card, agreed with.
"Yeah, I was," Hearn admitted to DAZN News about being disappointed in Garcia's performance after the point. "At that point, the cornerman, Robert’s (Garcia, Mikey’s brother) got to say to him, ‘Mikey', unless they were reading the fight wrong, ‘You got to stop this guy or you got to put a dent in him.’
"Mikey said, ‘I had the aggression and I was walking him (down).’ It was very difficult to give Mikey, I felt, more than three rounds. If you want to give him four rounds, I don’t see it. He didn’t do anything. It was really a lackluster performance."
When the final bell sounded, the sentiment was Martin (39-2, 13 KOs) had done enough to pull off the shocker in his United States debut against the most formidable opponent he's ever stepped inside the ring with. Hearn felt the same way as the judges did once it was all said and done and felt the win was a memorable one in one facet.
"My god," Hearn said. "Exactly had it scored like the two judges (who had it 97-93). I would have been really disappointed if they (the judges) didn’t give it to Sandor Martin because he won the fight.
"Sandor Martin just got more and more confident as the night went on. It was a massive win. A huge win for Spanish boxing. That’s probably the biggest win in the history of Spanish boxing."