Mikey Garcia aims for fourth divisional title, possible move up in weight

Mikey Garcia already has won titles in three weight classes -- and he aims for a fourth next month against Sergey Lipinets. Steve Marcus/Getty Images

Mikey Garcia, pound for pound one of boxing's best fighters, has already won world titles in three weight divisions -- featherweight, junior lightweight and lightweight -- but he believes he is not done. Not by a long shot.

Garcia, a reigning lightweight titleholder, harbors goals of winning titles in at least two more divisions, at junior welterweight and even welterweight. His opportunity to claim a belt at junior welterweight happens March 10 against Sergey Lipinets (Showtime, 10:15 p.m. ET/PT) at Freeman Coliseum in San Antonio in a fight postponed from Feb. 10 because Lipinets had an injured right hand.

Garcia (37-0, 30 KOs) relishes the chance to add to his hardware collection, and he is not shy about expressing his desire to seek even more after the fight with Lipinets (13-0, 10 KOs).

"I'm excited to have another opportunity on March 10 to show my fans what I'm all about and what I can do in the ring," Garcia said Tuesday during a workout for reporters at City of Angels Boxing Club in Los Angeles. "I'm preparing to win another world title, and that's all that's on my mind right now. Neither one of us wants to lose. We're both undefeated, and no one wants to give up that '0.' That's going to make this a great fight for the fans.

"I don't have a number of titles that I'm chasing, but I do believe I will be a champion at 140 pounds and eventually at welterweight. Each fight is unique, and I'm going to keep taking it one fight at a time."

But Garcia, 30, of Moreno Valley, California, couldn't help looking ahead. Should he defeat Lipinets -- he's favored to do so -- Garcia said he could take on fellow lightweight titleholder Jorge Linares in a unification fight on May 12, though that seems like a stretch. Still, if that did happen, it would give Linares a major fight on the same date that he had been offered a fight on ESPN against junior lightweight champion Vasiliy Lomachenko, who is planning to move up in weight.

Linares-Garcia would go on HBO as Golden Boy's live fight along with a taped replay of the Gennady Golovkin-Canelo Alvarez middleweight championship rematch scheduled for May 5 on HBO PPV. Golden Boy elected not to finalize the fight with Lomachenko because it did not want to put one of its top fighters on a card opposite its own HBO event.

But if Linares-Garcia were made for May 12, Garcia would have to leave Showtime to fight Linares on that date on HBO, which seems unlikely. Still, Garcia, who easily outpointed Adrien Broner at junior welterweight in his last fight in July, said he'd like to fight Linares. But he also talked about moving up in weight again to conquer more divisions.

"I'm telling you guys, you don't take me seriously because I'm smaller in weight right now," Garcia said. "I might be at welterweight by the end of this year or early next year. We're coming. Once I'm there, people will finally see and give me that credit that I deserve.

"At 147, you name it, you have (titleholder Errol) Spence, (unified titleholder Keith) Thurman, Danny (Garcia) and (Shawn) Porter, even (Terence) Crawford. All of those matchups would be pay-per-view-worthy. If I accomplish enough, I think fighting any of them would be pay-per-view.

"I've been winning and dominating my fights, but I still have room to show the fans more of my skills. I need opponents who will bring the best out of me. I'm going to keep trying to dominate each fight and make it easy for myself in the ring."

Robert Garcia, Mikey's trainer, brother and a former junior lightweight world titleholder, believes his brother has what it takes to keep climbing the scales and winning more belts.

"Fighters like Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao were able to move up in weight and still dominate because of their great skills," Robert Garcia said. "Very few fighters are able to do that. We believe that Mikey is one of those special fighters."

But first up is Lipinets, 28, a Kazakhstan native fighting out of Beverly Hills, California, who outpointed Japan's Akihiro Kondo for a vacant belt on Nov. 4. He will make his first title defense against Garcia.

"It was a little upsetting that we had to wait to have this fight, but it's part of the sport," Garcia said of the postponement. "We took a day off when we heard the news, and then we went back to work. Now we're ahead of schedule, so it worked out great.

"We're excited to be where we're at and to have the opportunity to win another world title. I'm most excited that this really takes me closer to the kind of recognition we deserve and the goals I want to achieve. Sergey Lipinets is the No. 1 priority right now. He's an undefeated world champion, and I can't take him lightly at all. I'm going to follow my game plan, and right now I'm on track to put on a great performance."

The co-feature on the card will pit Rances Barthelemy (26-0, 13 KOs) against Kiryl Relikh (21-2, 9 KOs) in a rematch for a vacant junior welterweight world title. They first met on May 20, and Barthelemy won a controversial decision in a title elimination bout.