Oscar De La Hoya has opened up on the reason he wasn’t in attendance at Ryan Garcia’s post-fight press conference after his loss to Gervonta Davis – an absence that has since left the promoter-fighter partnership in tatters.
Garcia was felled by a ‘Tank’ Davis body shot in the seventh round, being served his first career defeat in the biggest boxing event of the year so far.
Post-fight, neither De La Hoya or Bernard Hopkins of Golden Boy flanked him as he answered the media, although Eric Gomez, the president of the promotional company, was there.
Regardless, Garcia later claimed that he hadn’t felt supported by his team, sparking a very public back and forth with De La Hoya, who told him to ‘man up.’
Speaking to The Breakfast Club, the former world champion turned businessman elaborated on his previous statement that ‘death threats’ stopped him attending the presser.
“I’ve been there for him all along. I was there for him the whole week of Vegas, this and that. I don’t know if you were there, but if you would’ve been there at the fight, it was crazy. It was nuts. I’ve never seen anything like it.
I think the arena was overflowed by like 3,000 people … And so after the fight, I’m walking down with my security guards. We’re just like sardines trying to get out, and I hear this voice. ‘Watch your back. It’s gonna happen tonight.'”
De La Hoya explained that he left theT-Mobile Arena – packed with over 20,000 fans that contributed to the fifth-best gate in Nevada’s history – straightaway.
“Right away I just panicked like ‘oh s**t I just got threatened.’ So I told Hopkins to go to Ryan’s locker room, and all my executives were at Ryan’s locker room and they were even on stage with him after the fight – but the fact that I wasn’t… and now I’m the bad guy.
I was just trying to get out of there, because when you get something like that in your ear, I had no clue who it was, I just told my security guard let’s get out of here.”
De La Hoya has previously said that he was on the end of threatening messages throughout fight week, and that he would have acted the same in the circumstances even if Garcia had won.
He believes that his fighter won’t understand the dilemma.
Since that fall out, Garcia and De La Hoya’s relationship has worsened. They are currently suing each other – fighter because he feels terms have been violated and promoter because he wants his contract to be honoured in full.