Star boxer Ryan Garcia will train with Derrick James in Dallas ahead of his campaign for a 140-pound title, Garcia announced on social media Thursday.
Garcia, 24, presented James as his trainer on Instagram, where he boasts 10.4 million followers. Garcia had parted ways with trainer Joe Goossen following a seventh-round KO loss to Gervonta Davis last month in Las Vegas.
That superfight, which netted $22.8 million in ticket sales, was contested at a 136-pound catchweight, but Garcia (23-1, 19 KOs), ESPN’s No. 6 boxer at 140 pounds, will compete at junior welterweight going forward.
“I’m searching for greatness,” Garcia told ESPN. “I’m looking to improve. I’m looking to be a champion with Derrick James. I feel he can guide me and mentor me.”
James is ESPN’s reigning Trainer of the Year. In 2022, the former boxer guided Errol Spence Jr. and Jermell Charlo to unification title wins, as Spence added a third welterweight title while Charlo became the undisputed junior middleweight champion.
Earlier this year, James began working with former heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua, and now the trainer has added a fourth marquee fighter to the mix. James is known for perfecting power punchers, so it’s a natural fit with the heavy-handed, quick-twitch Garcia.
Garcia first teamed with Goossen as an amateur boxer in Southern California. Garcia was trained by his father, Henry, for many of his pro fights, but Eddy Reynoso took control of the corner in 2018.
Reynoso, Canelo Alvarez’s longtime trainer, guided Garcia to five wins in five bouts, including his seventh-round TKO of Luke Campbell in January 2021. Following that career-best victory, Garcia was out of the ring for 15 months while he addressed his mental health and recovered from wrist surgery.
When Garcia returned in April 2022, there was a familiar face in his corner alongside his father: Goossen. Goossen, 69, trained Garcia for three fights: a decision win over Emmanuel Tagoe in April 2022, a sixth-round KO of Javier Fortuna in July and, finally, the loss to Davis.
Ryan Garcia, on quest for title, to train with Derrick James