Danny Garcia squeezed by a fleet-footed Lamont Peterson on Saturday in front of 12,000 fans at Barclays Center in Brooklyn to remain undefeated.
After 12 competitive back-and forth rounds of action, unified junior welterweight champion Garcia managed to walk away with a majority decision– the judges’ scorecards reading 114-114 even, 115-113 to Garcia, 115-113 to Garcia.
Check out picture from the bout here:
From the opening bell, Peterson used an active jab and ring movement to control the distance and to keep Garcia from getting a fix on him.
But in the end, it was not sufficient to win over the judges, and Garcia’s power and combinations were enough for the undefeated champion to barely squeak through with the victory.
“Peterson stuck to his game plan and moved a lot,” Garcia said after the fight. “He did a good job and I did a good job. I feel great. I was really prepared. I saw it was getting a little edgy in the middle there. I thought it was close. I’m not going to lie. But I felt like I did enough to win.”
In the fight previous to tonight, Garcia (30-0, 17 KOs) tore through an outmatched Rod Salka on his way to a second-round KO in June 2014. Going into the Salka fight, 27-year-old Garcia beat Mauricio Herrera with a controversial majority decision, and outpointed Lucas Mattysse.
Lamont Peterson (33-3-1, 17 KOs) entered the ring Saturday coming off of a late-round tko win over Edgar Santana in June 2014. This followed a victory over Dierry Jean and a third-round knockout loss at the hands of Lucas Mattysse. 31-year-old Peterson’s only other loss prior to Saturday was to Timothy Bradley in 2009.
Peterson took to the perimeter from the get-go of Saturday’s fight, setting up the pattern of the fight that would follow for most of the 12 rounds: Garcia chasing and trying to land combination as Peterson circled clockwise on his toes and used his jab to control the distance. Get a taste of the pacing by watching the third round:
At the half-way point of the fight, Peterson began engaging more and, in some instances, had Garcia on his back foot and trying to regain control. The crowd, which had began getting anxious from the first low-action half of the fight, started to wake up and we had a fight on our hands. Watch as Peterson starts putting on the pressure in the sixth frame:
The last installments of the fight continued the neck-to-neck action, with Peterson dominating the first halves of the rounds and Garcia taking the second halves. The best action came at the closing moments of the fight, when the two warriors finally let the defense down and the fists fly.
“I followed my plan all along, find where I can get my chances and then take them,” Peterson said.
Garcia, who has only fought as a 140-pound super lightweight, proved on Saturday that he could hang at Saturday’s 143-pound catchweight. He and father/trainer Garcia have made no secret of their plans to vacate Danny’s titles and move up to the star-studded 147-welterweight division, and the next time fans see ‘Swift’ in the ring, it’ll likely be as a welterweight.
The loss for Peterson may mean a couple of steps back of steps back in the rankings, but he put on an excellent performance and will be back in the ring soon. Peterson entered Saturday’s fight as the current IBF World super lightweight champ. Although there were no belts on the line in Saturday’s fight, with the defeat to Garcia, the IBF sanctioning body has threatened to strip Peterson of his title. But to many fans, Peterson looked like a champ in the ring on Saturday.
On the co-feature of the night, Andy Lee and Peter Quillin fought to a split-decision.
Danny Garcia vs. Lamont Peterson Live Round-By-Round
(scores are not official)
Refresh this page throughout the fight for live updates.
Round 1: Garcia in giraffe-patterned trunks, Peterson wears purple. They come jabbing and measuring. Right from Peterson short. Peterson already working the perimeter. Left hook Peterson. Garcia working the jab to the body and head, but not landing yet. Left hook Garcia. Right from Garcia to the face. Minute left, Peterson jabs to the body, the Garcia left to the body. Good action. Right Peterson. Peterson with right-left combo. Peterson keeping his distance. Jab Peterson. Feeling out round. 10-9 Garcia
Round 2: Peterson takes to the perimeter, circling clockwise. Jab Peterson. Looping right from Peterson lands. Peterson keeping his distance. Jabs to Garcia’s face. Garcia trying to get a fix. Garcia misses punches, lands left to the body. Another. Right to the body, Garcia. Big Left hook Garcia. Jab to the body from Garcia. Garcia misses with right. Peterson jabs from a distance. Peterson controlling the distance well. 19-19
Round 3: Meet in the middle, Garcia pushes Peterson back with jabs. Garcia in the center, Peterson on the perimeter. Left hook, Garcia. Left to body from Garcia. Garcia stalking, Peterson on the move. Left from Garcia. Jab, Peterson to the gut. Again. Good movement variety from Peterson. Right to the body from Peterson. Right hand from Garcia. Garcia lunges, they clinch. Back at it- Peterson jabbing on the move, Garcia trying to close the distance. Close round. 29-28 Peterso
Round 4: Garcia double jabs as he follows Peterson around the ring. Jab from Peterson counter with right from Garcia. Peterson on the move, dancing. Garcia complains. Right from Peterson, and he darts away. Left right from Peterson. He slips. No knockdown. Left from Garcia, and Peterson bounces away and jabs. Right hand from Garcia wings Peterson. Left to the body, Garcia. 38-38
Round 5: Garcia looking to cut off the ring. Nice jab from Peterson. Quick. Garcia charges, but nothing. Garcia lands right hand. Right-left from Garcia wings. Big right from Peterson, followed by left. Right to the body from Garcia, misses. Three punch combo from Garcia. Peterson jab. Jab, hook from Garcia. Big right from Garcia. Garcia on the hunt, Peterson on the bike. Peterson jabbing to the body and head. 48-47 Garcia
Round 6: Meeting in the center of the ring, Peterson moves back to the outside. Double jabs from Peterson answered by Garcia hook. Two jabs from Peterson. Now Peterson pressing forward. Three punch combo Garcia. Right to the body from Peterson. Right from Garcia. Right from Garcia. Left to Peterson’s gut. Better action this round. Left jab to the body from Peterson. Right hand from Peterson. Another close round. 57-57
Round 7: Second half of the round. Peterson to the perimeter. Jab jab. Right to the body from Garcia. Jab-hook from Garcia. Right from Garcia counters Peterson jab. 1-2 Garcia, answered by stiff jab. 1-2 Peterson. Garcia jab, then right to body. Garcia works the body from body sides, then back upstairs. Now two from Peterson to the body. Good exchanges. Big right from Garcia. The boys are coming alive. Big right from Peterson, warned about rabbit punches. Peterson dancing to finish the round 67-66 Garcia
Round 8: They coming punching, Peterson chasing Garcia to the ropes. Big shot to the body from Peterson. Left from Garcia, countered by right from Peterson. Three punch combo Garcia. Then left to the body. 1-2 from Garcia. Left to the body from Peterson. 1-2 Garcia. Right from Garcia . Left Peterson to the head counters Garcia. Peterson pressuring, pushes Garcia to the rope, big right from Peterson. Huge right Peterson. Right from Garcia. Jab Garcia. Good back and forth in this round. Peterson jabs, closing distance. Whew! 77-75 Garcia
Round 9: Double jabs from Peterson. Looking confident. Right hand from Peterson. Peterson eats left-right. Jab from Garcia. Peterson back to working the perimeter, Garcia following. Garcia eats a 1-2. Stiff jab Peterson. Peterson clowning around. Left right from Garcia. Another. Right hand from Garcia. Left from Peterson countered by right from Garcia. Another right from Garcia opens a combination. 1-2 Garcia. They exchange jabs. Good right hand at the bell from Peterson. 86-85 Garcia
Round 10: Peterson on the move and showboating. Shuffling. Keeping his distance. Right hand Peterson. Left hook from Peterson. Now Garcia shuffling. Dance off! Ok, back to boxing. Peterson on the move, stops to land a 1-2. Garcia lands two punches. Right hand from Peterson. They clinch and break. Right hand from Garcia followed by left hook. Peterson on the move, crowd boo’s. 95-95
Round 11: They come out and Peterson standing his ground. Left from Garcia. Exchange jabs. Combo from Garcia answered by stiff jab. Right from Garcia. Three punches from Garcia land. Right and left to the body from Peterson. Left hook from Peterson. Peterson is pushed, no knockdown. They exchange hooks. Left hook from Garcia. Then big right from Garcia. Minute left. They tangle. Right to the body from Garcia. Three punch-combo from Garcia. Right hand from Peterson, then three punches to the body from Peterson. Good round. Close. 105-104 Garcia
Round 12: Final round! They touch gloves and a left from Garcia. Right hand from Peterson lands flush. Big left from Peterson! Peterson stalking now. Left from Garcia to the body. Back and forths, Garcia landing combos, Peterson with single shots. Left Peterson. Right hand from Peterson countered by hard left hook. Big left hook from Peterson. Stiff left from Garcia. Exchanging lefts, Garcia looks hurt. He’s ok. Peterson with big right. Peterson right. Peterson double jabs. Final bell! 114-114
To the cards! Official scores: 114-114 even, 115-113 to Garcia, 115-113 to Garcia.
Garcia by majority decision.