Ryan Garcia (L) and Stephen Jackson. Ryan Garcia (L, after a 2019 fight) and Stephen Jackson. (Garcia photo from Joe Camporeale/USA Today Sports, Jackson photo from @_stak5_ on Instagram.)

One of the more remarkable social media meltdowns in a while came from boxer Ryan Garcia Thursday. Following a number of other bizarre incidents over the last months, Garcia went further still on a Twitter/X Space. There, he dropped a bunch of slurs about both Black people and Muslims, with his rants eventually getting him expelled from the World Boxing Council.

But what particularly stood out were his comments on George Floyd, the Black man whose 2020 killing by Minneapolis police sparked nationwide protest. Here are those. (Language warning.)

That drew a lot of response, including the aforementioned WBC ban. But perhaps the most notable response came from All The Smoke co-host Stephen Jackson, who was a longtime friend of Floyd’s and has been involved in many of the efforts to remember him and push for change since his death. Jackson initially started with quite a fiery tweet:

But, in an Instagram video, Jackson emphasized the “get some help” part of that message:


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Stephen Jackson (@_stak5_)

“First you go from taking steroids, then you’re talking about digging George Floyd up and killing him again, now you’re talking about you hate n****** and you want to join the KKK? Look, dawg, you need to get some help, bro. Because we don’t play by the same rules that you play by in that ring, dawg.

“And I’m just telling you, just like I told you in the DMs when you said some stuff, you need to get some help, because it’s a whole different ballgame out here, bro. Anybody who’s going to bring up the dead is dying inside.

“You’re a clout-chaser, that’s all you are. You’re looking for attention. You’re trying to live a life that you didn’t grow up in. You’re not that, Ryan. You’re a boxer. Stick to that, bro. Keep George Floyd’s name out of your mouth.

“If you hate n****** and want to join the KKK, like you said on Clubhouse, go ahead. Just don’t f*** with us. And don’t expect us to f*** with you. People say the real s*** when they’re drunk. Facts.”

As mentioned, this comes after a lot of strange behavior from Garcia. His April win over Devin Haney was tainted by a subsequent revelation he’d tested positive for performance-enhancing drug Ostarine. That led to a settlement last month with the New York State Athletic Commission where his win was changed to a no-contest and he also forfeited his purse and accepted a one-year boxing ban.

That fight also saw Garcia miss gaining Haney’s WBC title thanks to showing up 3.2 pounds overweight. And it came after a bunch of bizarre pre-fight actions, including him getting kicked out of Citi Field. And Garcia has only made more and more odd comments since then. And he doubled down on these particular comments later Thursday:

But Garcia’s parents added to the calls for him to get help:

We’ll see what happens next. But Garcia certainly kicked up a hornet’s nest with his remarks Thursday, and got himself expelled from the WBC in the process. And Jackson’s response here was notable, not just for his connection with Floyd, but also for his podcast’s prominence (and it’s notable that he and co-host Matt Barnes recently launched a boxing spinoff All The Smoke Fight platform, so he has some experience covering and interacting with Garcia).

And his remarks here stood out, both for his criticism of Garcia but also for his push for Garcia to get help.

[Stephen Jackson on Instagram]

About Andrew Bucholtz

Andrew Bucholtz has been covering sports media for Awful Announcing since 2012. He is also a staff writer for The Comeback. His previous work includes time at Yahoo! Sports Canada and Black Press.