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Danny Garcia fighting for relevancy after mega-fight dries up

In a perfect world, Philadelphia native Danny Garcia would be fighting Errol Spence Jr. this weekend in what would have been a mega-showdown for a welterweight championship. But plans for that proposed bout were wrecked — literally — when Spence crashed his Ferrari last October and suffered multiple injuries.

Spence miraculously survived after being ejected from his car as it flipped multiple times in downtown Dallas. The IBF/WBC welterweight champion is recovering and said he plans to fight later this year, but that left Garcia searching for another opponent to open 2020.

Instead of facing Spence, Garcia takes on Ivan Redkach of Ukraine in a non-title bout Saturday night at Barclays Center. Presented by Premier Boxing Champions, the main event will be televised on Showtime as part of a triple-header that also includes former 154-pound champion Jarrett Hurd (23-1, 16 KOs) of Accokeek, Md., against Francisco “Chia” Santana (25-7-1, 12 KOs) of Santa Barbara, Calif., and unbeaten Stephen Fulton (17-0, 8 KOs) of Philadelphia facing Arnold Khegai (16-0-1, 10 KOs) of Ukraine in a super bantamweight matchup.

Garcia (35-2, 21 KOs) insisted he isn’t taking Redkach lightly despite the disappointment of not fighting Spence.

“You have to fight every fight like it’s your last because it could be,” Garcia said. “You never know what’s going to happen. This is a very important fight for me and my future. I know Redkach is hungry, but I know what it takes to win on this level and I’m hungry.”

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Ivan Redkach (r.) and Danny Garcia.Getty Images

With Spence still in the mix, there remain plenty of big fights and big money for Garcia in a 147-pound division that also includes WBO champion Terence Crawford, WBA champion Manny Pacquiao and former champion Shawn Porter. But Garcia knows he needs a victory over Redkach (23-4-1) to remain relevant.

“We picked Redkach because he’s dangerous and we knew he’d be tough,” Garcia said. “I’m definitely not overlooking him. I want to show everyone I’m still one of the best pound-for-pound fighters in the world.”

Redkach was also selected because he is a southpaw and facing him will offer preparation for future bouts against Spence, Crawford or Pacquiao, also southpaws.

“After we couldn’t have the Spence fight, I wanted the next toughest southpaw,” Garcia said. “We wanted the southpaw work for that fight or a Pacquiao fight. We’ll be ready when those fights come up.”

Redkach, who defeated former welterweight champion Devon Alexander in his last outing, is hoping Garcia is looking past him.

“He’s counting on this as a tune-up fight and that’s a big mistake,” Redkach said. “This is not going to be a tune-up fight for him. I’m going to knock him out. That’s how I see this fight going.”

Garcia will be making his eighth appearance at Barclays Center, the most of any boxer. He also holds the arena’s single-event boxing attendance record when he drew 16,500 for his welterweight unification fight with Keith Thurman in 2017.

“The fans here have gotten to know me really well and all my fans in Philly can make the quick drive up,” Garcia said. “They know when Danny Garcia comes to New York, it’s going to be a great night of boxing.”

Despite a recent change in ownership and other administrative positions, Barclays Center plans to maintain an active boxing program under the leadership of Keith Sheldon, the executive vice president of programming and development. The next card in the building is set for March 7, when unbeaten Brooklyn heavyweight Adam Kownacki faces Robert Helenius in a main event that will be televised on Fox PBC Fight Night and Fox Deportes.

“I think the fact that we’ll have hosted three fight cards in four months following our ownership change really speaks for itself,” Sheldon said in a statement to The Post. “The people who have been behind the scenes with the venue for years, working diligently to propel the growth of boxing in Brooklyn, are still here. Our ownership groups have always been focused on the big event business and fights like Garcia on Showtime and Kownacki on Fox, which reach audiences of millions, demonstrate that dedication.”