Kendall Holt to fight Danny Garcia

8/4/2011 - Boxing

Former junior welterweight titlist Kendall Holt and rising contender Danny Garcia will meet at 140-pounds Oct. 15 on the HBO PPV undercard of the Bernard Hopkins-Chad Dawson light heavyweight championship fight at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, Holt promoter Gary Shaw told ESPN.com Thursday night.

Garcia had already announced he was fighting on the card, but the agreement to fight Holt was not finalized until Thursday evening, which is when Shaw said he got the word from Pat English, Holt's attorney, that it was a done deal.

"It's done, 100 percent done and I'm very excited about this fight," Shaw said. "I think it's a great fight and the right fight for both fighters."

The winner will move a step closer to a title opportunity as Shaw said it would serve as an elimination bout for the No. 2 position in two sanctioning organizations.

Shaw said it was not a difficult fight to make.

"It wasn't hard at all," he said. "Golden Boy and myself both wanted to make the fight and both fighters wanted the fight. That makes the perfect marriage."

The 30-year-old Holt (27-4, 15 KOs), of Paterson, N.J., won a 140-pound title by knocking out Ricardo Torres in the first round in July 2008 in their explosive rematch. Holt made one defense before losing a decision to Timothy Bradley Jr. in an April 2009 unification bout.

Holt went on to lose a second straight fight when Kaizer Mabuza stopped him in the sixth round of an eliminator in February 2010. But he has bounced back with a pair of wins, including a third-round knockout of former lightweight titlist Julio Diaz in his last fight in January.

Garcia (21-0, 14 KOs), 23, from Philadelphia like Hopkins, turned pro in 2007 after a standout amateur career in which he won a 2006 U.S. national title and just missed making the 2008 U.S. Olympic team. He's been widely considered one of boxing's top prospects and is coming off his most significant win, a lopsided 10-round decision against former unified lightweight titlist Nate Campbell in April.

"I don't think Garcia has ever felt the kind of power Kendall has and Kendall may not have been in with anyone recently with the kind of speed that Garcia has," Shaw said. "It's the old cliche -- this is the young fighter versus the veteran, which is the theme of Hopkins and Dawson as well."

Hopkins (52-5-2, 32 KOs), at 46, became the oldest fighter in boxing history to win a world title when he outpointed Jean Pascal in May in a rematch of their December draw. Now he faces 29-year-old Dawson (30-1, 17 KOs), one of the top 175-pounders in the world, in a mandatory defense.

Also set for the card: Antonio DeMarco (25-2-1, 18 KOs) will face former featherweight and junior lightweight titleholder Jorge Linares (31-1, 20 KOs) for the lightweight belt recently vacated by Humberto Soto (DeMarco's cousin).

Shaw said he and Golden Boy are still working to finalize a fourth televised bout, but that it could include heavyweight Franklin Lawrence, whom Shaw recently signed, or blue chip featherweight prospect Gary Russell Jr., a 2008 U.S. Olympian.

"We'll lock in the last fight probably by Wednesday," Shaw said.

A news conference is scheduled for Monday morning at the Staples Center in Los Angeles to formally announce the card.

Dan Rafael covers boxing for ESPN.com. Follow him on Twitter.