PBC on Showtime Results: Gervonta Davis and Erickson Lubin Win by Stunning Stoppages
By: Hans Themistode
WBA Super Featherweight champion Gervonta Davis (21-0, 20 KOs) made his ring entrance to the song thriller by Michael Jackson. He sure gave one thrilling performance tonight in the ring as he destroyed Hugo Ruiz (39-5, 33 KOs).
The contest started with Davis stalking his much bigger opponent. Ruiz was fighting on his back foot but couldn’t get much of a rhythm. Several combinations landed for the champion as Ruiz began to bleed profusely from his nose. A clean left hook to the head forced Ruiz to take a knee. He managed to beat the count but the referee waved off the contest in the very first round. It was quite the performance from the young star. Davis wasn’t the only one on the card tonight who put on a show for the fans.
Jr Middleweight Erickson Lubin (20-1, 15 KOs) made a major statement tonight in becoming the first man to stop former champion Ishe Smith (29-11, 12 KOs) tonight. The win by Lubin did not come as a shock but the dominance he showed tonight was breathtaking.
Smith held the IBF title in 2013 and has consistently given even the upper echelon fighters a tough test. Coming into this contest Smith was looking to stop a two fight losing streak and vault himself back into title contention. Lubin on the other hand had other plans.
The contest started off tentatively but quickly picked up in the second round where Lubin showed his dominance. A straight left hand landed flush for Lubin and saw Smith crash down to the canvas. From there it became an onslaught as Lubin poured the pressure on. Another combination landed by Lubin saw Smith once again hit the canvas.
As often the case in the career of Smith he continued to pick himself up and fight valiantly. A third knockdown for Lubin seemed to spell the end for Smith but somehow he not only beat the count but continued to fight on as he barely escaped the round. Lubin came out in the third round wanting to put an end to the contest and he did just that as he once again knocked Smith down to the mat. Smith’s trainers stepped in and stopped the contest. After the end of the match the 40 year old Smith retired from the sport marking an end to his almost 20 year career.
Lubin started off his career dominating the competition and quickly won the ESPN prospect of the year award. He then took a major step up in class when he challenged then champion Jermell Charlo and was subsequently stopped in the first round. Tonight proved that he has put that devastating loss behind him.
Defeating Smith in such dominant fashion will place him back in the thick of things in the Jr Middleweight division.
Both Davis and Lubin sent stern messages to their respective divisions tonight with explosive performances. 2019 could become a big year for both of these young stars.
PBC Boxing on Showtime Preview: Davis vs. Ruiz, Lubin vs. Smith
By: Hans Themistode
Gervonta Davis (20-0, 19 KOs) was supposed to be taking on the toughest test of his young career this Saturday night at the Dignity Health Sports Park in Carson California.
Davis was originally scheduled to defend his WBA Regular Super Featherweight title against three weight division champion Abner Mares (31-3-1, 15 KOs). Unfortunately the aforementioned Mares suffered a detached retina while training for the fight and was subsequently removed from the card. Mares would go on to have surgery to repair the damaged retina with the hopes of fighting again sometime soon.
Photo Credit: Dave Mandel/Showtime Boxing
The injury to Mares is unfortunate but the show must go on. Davis won’t be given any breaks as he will now be taking on the hard hitting Hugo Ruiz (39-4, 33 KOs) who has also captured two titles in his career. Ruiz won the interim WBA Bantamweight title in 2011 when he stopped Alvaro Perez. In 2016 Ruiz would once again capture another world championship, winning the WBC title in the Super Bantamweight division when he knocked out Julio Ceja in the very first round. Davis will come into this fight as the favorite and rightfully so but Ruiz has the capabilities to create one of the biggest upsets in the early boxing calendar.
Going into his matchup with Mares, Davis had several physical advantages working in his favor. However now that he will be matched up with Ruiz he will now be at a decided disadvantage. Come fight night Ruiz will enjoy both a four inch height and three inch reach advantage over the champion. Ruiz also has the luxury of being much more active than his counterpart. 2018 was a very inactive year for the champion as he only fought one time during the first half of the calendar year. He was last seen in the ring April of 2018 against Jesus Cuellar. Easily dispatching of him in only three rounds.
Ruiz on the other hand fought twice last year picking up a dominant decision win over Dennis Contreras. He then followed that up by stopping Jesus Galicia in the second round of their contest. Ruiz has already began his 2019 boxing campaign with a decision win over veteran Alberto Guevara just last month. Although this is a short notice fight for Ruiz he wasted little time accepting the challenge as he see’s this as a major opportunity for himself. Dethroning Davis will not be an easy task however.
There is a reason why Davis is known as “Tank”. In 20 professional fights he has stopped 19 of his opponents. The champion has a knack for finishing fights early and always has the edge in terms of power over his opponents. Ruiz doesn’t have quite the same amount of knockout power as Davis but he has a ton of pop in his punches as he has knocked out 33 of his 39 opponents. The 32 year old Ruiz will also have the edge in terms of boxing experience over his 24 year old counterpart.
This isn’t the matchup fans were hoping for but we all know the famous saying. Styles make fights. The tall, rangy and explosive Ruiz has the tools to make this a long night for the champion.
Before Davis attempts to defend his title, a former world champion in Ishe Smith (29-10, 12 KOs) and one title challenger in Erickson Lubin (19-1, 14 KOs) will be looking to regain their footing in the Jr middleweight division as they lock horns in the co main event slot.
If it feels as though Ishe Smith has been around forever it is because he has. He first made his debut in the year 2000. 19 years later he is still competing at a high level and itching for another title shot. Smith has faced a who’s who of contenders and champions throughout his long career including the likes of Daniel Jacobs, Erislandy Lara, Sergio Mora and plenty of others.
In 2013 Smith outpointed former IBF Jr Middleweight champion Cornelius Bundrage to secure his first and only world title. Win, lose or draw Smith has always been a tough out. However at 40 years of age and riding a two fight losing streak he can’t afford to lose his third consecutive bout. In order for Smith to put a halt to his current slide he will have to get through the one time title challenger Erickson Lubin who is looking to continue his own comeback trail.
Lubin had a dominant start to his career as he quickly became known for his ability to cause eye catching knockouts. His quickness, sharp boxing ability and of course his knockout power resulted in him receiving the ESPN prospect of the year award in 2016. He would later parlay that achievement into a title shot with then champion Jermell Charlo. The bout was viewed as a 50/50 contest with some giving Lubin the slight edge. What proceeded to happen was unexpected to say the least. Lubin was knocked out cold in the very first round.
Since that loss Lubin has only competed in other bout, stopping veteran fighter Silverio Ortiz in the fourth round. Lubin now has the opportunity to add a major scalp to his resume by defeating the former Jr Middleweight belt holder. A loss for either man would become detrimental to their career aspirations.
Both of these fights are significant to the landscape of their respective divisions. For Gervonta Davis he is looking to once again make a statement and claim another dominant victory while Hugo Ruiz is hoping to once again call himself a champion by nights end. Both Ishe Smith and Erickson Lubin are on the brink of irrelevancy with a loss. A win however for either man could propel them back into the thick of things in the Jr Middleweight division.
Everyone is fighting is for something important and will be hungry to get the victory. This Saturday night we will all see who wants it the most.
Three-Division, Four-Time World Champion Abner Mares Sustains Injury; Forced To Withdraw From Match Against WBA Super Featherweight World Champion Gervonta Davis
Three-division, four-time champion Abner Mares has been forced to pull out of the WBA Super Featherweight title match against two-time super featherweight champion Gervonta Davis on Saturday, February 9 after suffering an injury while training.
Davis will now defend against former world champion Hugo Ruiz in the main event of SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING, with coverage beginning at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT from Dignity Health Sports Park in Carson, California and presented by Premier Boxing Champions.
Ruiz is an all-action brawler who previously picked up a world title at super bantamweight in 2015 and most recently defeated Alberto Guevara in January on the Pacquiao vs. Broner PPV event in a featherweight fight. Ruiz, who owns 18 first round knockouts, floored Guevara in the opening minute and cruised to a near-shutout decision victory.
He had originally been slotted for an interim title shot against Jhack Tepora in January before Tepora missed weight, but will now have his chance to fight for a belt against one of the most-feared punchers at 130-pounds on February 9. The 30-year-old from Sinaloa, Mexico stands at five feet, nine inches tall, nearly four inches taller than Davis, and has won three straight fights leading up to this fight.
“I trained for three months to fight a southpaw when I fought in January,” said Ruiz. “When the opponent changed, it was hard to adjust in 24 hours. After the fight I immediately went back to the gym, because you never know what’s going to happen in boxing. I’m 100 percent ready to knockout Gervonta Davis.”
“Hugo Ruiz has another opportunity to fight for a world title because he’s demonstrated that he’s devoted to boxing and his career,” said Sampson Lewkowicz, Ruiz’s Promoter. “He went right back to the gym after his last fight. He’s ready for another great opportunity to be a world champion and he’s going to take advantage of that opportunity.”
Mares injured his right elbow during sparring at the Robert Garcia Boxing Gym in Riverside, Calif. Mares said he had experienced soreness in his elbow following the past two fights, but nothing that had ever given him nor his team concern.
“I’m not going to sugarcoat this. I’m disappointed and devastated that I’ve injured my right elbow in sparring,’’ Mares said. “This is something that I haven’t had happen to me during my career and the feeling is just horrible. I will be going to see my doctor about this and am prepared to follow whatever recommendations and rehab that gets me back into the ring. I’m healthy, not afraid of doing the work and I will be back. This is a temporary setback. Don’t count me out.’’
“Boxing is a sport of brains, passion and physical punishment,” said Mares’ trainer Robert Garcia. “When you’re in the ring sparring with talented, top-class sparring partners, the chances of injuries are very high. That was the situation in this case. He was sparring top young fighters and he injured his elbow. He cannot fight like that, especially in a fight against Davis.”
Mares, who has engaged in numerous memorable fights throughout his storied career, was seeking to move up in weight and looking to capture his fifth world title in a fourth weight class.
A Spectrum of Bad Behavior in Boxing
By: Ted’s Sares
When the #MeToo movement got started, Actor Matt Damion was criticized for suggesting that there was a “spectrum of behavior” and that zero tolerance should not be applied across the board. He later apologized for his remarks, but then some criticized him for apologizing. He would have been better off zipping his clam.
However, when it comes to boxing, it’s a much different story as political correctness is not very prevalent. However, a spectrum or hierarchy of behavior does seem to exist and names like Adrian Broner, Billy Joe Saunders, Jermain Taylor, and Gervonta Davis emerge.
Billy Joe Saunders
His latest double trouble occurred when he was found using Oxilofrine resulting in his scheduled fight with Demetrius “Boo Boo” Andrade being canceled. As writer Ben Thomsett says, “Is the banned substance list too complicated? Did Saunders ingest Oxilofrine unknowingly? Is the supplement market too dodgy to trust? Can you be a World Champion by only eating normal food; without protein shakes; nasal sprays; power gels; etc. etc.? Is talent and hard work not enough anymore? Who can we trust? Who decides the moral high ground in our sport?
He was also handed £100k fine from British Boxing Board of Control for his vile behavior on video shown on social media of him offering a woman drugs. The stewards found Saunders guilty of bringing the sport of boxing into disrepute and fined him, and issued a severe reprimand as to his future conduct. His apologies seemed lees than remorseful. For a guy with a high ring IQ, Billy Joe can’t translate it to his personal behavior—or so it would seem. His double whammy behavior puts him near the bad end of the “spectrum.
AB’s issues seem to get worse and worse and one of these days he just might assault and hurt someone outside the ring. The warning signs here are blatant but are blatantly being ignored. The “Problem” is a story that will not have a happy ending unless he heeds the signs. He belongs to the right of BJS and is moving closer to the left with each unsavory incident.
Gervonta “Tank” Davis
According to TMZ SPORTS, A woman claims Davis punched her in the head multiple times during an incident at a Dallas strip club … and now intends to sue Davis for $2 MILLION. Reputedly, the woman did not file a police report — but came forward with the allegations after being “inspired by the #MeToo movement.” Oh Oh. And It’s not the first time “Tank” has been accused of getting violent — he was arrested in September in Washington D.C. after police say he was street fighting.. He also has some traffic violations to deal with. This kid has all the potential in the world, yet seems determined to blow it. This kind of behavior belongs somewhere between Saunders and Broner. “Tank” needs to straighten out NOW.
Jermain has been handled and treated as a criminal when he really is more mentally damaged than criminal. He needs the kind of medical intervention that the Arkansas Criminal Justice System is not equipped to provide. He needs help — ASAP . True, Jermain Taylor must be accountable for his unlawful acts, but he also must be treated sooner rather than later if another Edwin Valero-type ending is to be prevented. Unlike Billy Joe who is responsible for his actions and attendant bad behavior, Jermain belongs on a different spot on the Spectrum
Can you name others who might be eligible for a place on boxing’s hierarchy of bad behavior?
Ted Sares is one of the world’s oldest active full power lifters and Strongman competitors. He is a member of Ring 10, and Ring 4’s Boxing Hall of Fame. He also is an Auxiliary Member of the Boxing Writers Association of America (BWAA).
Gervonta Davis Accused Of Physically Assaulting Woman
By: Sean Crose
“A woman claims boxing star Gervonta Davis punched her in the head multiple times during an incident at a Dallas strip club,” says TMZ, “and now intends to sue Davis for two million.” The woman’s attorney reportedly told TMZ that Davis punched the woman in the Dallas strip club where she worked on April 30th of this year. “As a result,” TMZ says, “the woman says she was hospitalized with a ‘traumatic head injury’ and has had to seek counseling to deal with the psychological injury associated with the attack.”
The woman apparently didn’t go to the police after the reported incident, but – inspired by the #MeToo movement – has now decided to go public. Davis, who currently holds the WBA junior lightweight strap, will certainly have a chance to defend himself against the charges. Fairly or not, the Baltimore native is developing a reputation as a troublesome individual in the mold of Adrien Broner. One of the more talented fighters operating in the professional ranks, the undefeated 23-year-old has recently expressed unhappiness at Mayweather Promotions for not scheduling him enough fights.
Boxing Insider will keep readers updated as the story develops.
Jermall Charlo and Gervonta Davis Ask For Golovkin and Lomachenko
By: Ken Hissner
After Saturday’s quick knockouts on Showtime two of the winners shot their mouths off after destroying lesser opponents and asking for something they may regret in the future. In other words “Watch what you ask for!”
Houston’s Jermall Charlo, 27-0 (21) won the interim WBC World Middleweight title knocking out Hugo Centeno, Jr., 26-2 (14), of Oxnard, CA, in the second round. Charlo only had one fight in 2017 against a much overrated Jorge Sebastian Heiland, 29-5-2 (16), from Argentina in the 4th round.
The former IBF World Super Welterweight Champion called out Gennady “GGG” Golovkin, 37-0-1 (33), of KAZ and L.A., CA. who on May 5th will be defending his title or title’s against the WBC No. 1 Super Middleweight against Vanes “Nightmare” Martirosyan, 36-3-1 (21), of Armenia and Glendale, CA., who has lost to twin brother Jermell “Iron Man” Charlo, 30-0 (15), back in March of 2015 via a 10 round decision. Martirosyan has never been stopped in his 40 bout career. He was the USA 2004 Olympian at welterweight.
The other winner Saturday night was Gervonta “Tank” Davis, 20-0 (19), of Baltimore, MD, but having moved out to Las Vegas, NV. He stopped Jesus Marcelo Andres “El Jinete Cuellar, 28-3 (21), former WBA World Featherweight Champion in the 3rd round to win the WBA Super World Super Featherweight title.
Interviewer Jim Gray brought up the name WBO Super World Super Featherweight Champion Vasyl “Hi-Tech” Lomachenko, 10-1 (8), of the Ukraine now living in Oxnard, CA. He will be fighting WBA Lightweight Champion Jorge “El Nino de Oro Golden Boy” Linares, 44-3 (27), of VZ now living in Tokyo, Japan May 12 at Madison Square Garden.
This writer considers Lomachenko P4P No. 1 and Golovkin P4P No. 2. Both are former Olympians with Lomachenko winning Gold Medals in 2008 and 2012. Golovkin won a Silver Medal in 2004 after defeating Andre Dirrell losing in the final to Russian Gaydarbek Gaydarbekov who never turned professional.
My thoughts are Charlo meeting the Danny “Miracle Man” Jacobs, 33-2 (29), of Brooklyn, NY, and Maciej “Striczu” Sulecki, 26-0 (10), of Warsaw, Poland, winner on April 28th at the Barclay Center. Sulecki stopped Centeno in June of 2016 in the 10th round.
I’m sure that though under suspension for six months Saul “Canelo” Alvarez, 49-1-2 (34), of Guadalajara, MEX, and Golovkin will meet in sometime on or around September pending on the length of the suspension. That controversial draw that Golovkin got ripped off on should be changed to a NC or ND.
This writer felt that Golovkin could meet WBO World Champion Billy Joe Saunders, 26-0 (12), of Hatfield Hertfordshire, UK, with all the titles on the line. He will meet Martin Murray, 36-4-1 (17), on June 23rd in the UK, whose only stoppage loss was to Golovkin in June of 2015 in Monte Carlo in the 11th round.
If Charlo and Davis get “WHAT THEY ASKED FOR” I’m sure it will not before 2019.
PBC on Showtime Preview: Davis vs. Cuellar, Charlo vs. Centeno, Broner vs. Vargas
By: William Holmes
On Saturday night Al Haymon’s Premier Boxing Champions (PBC) will be putting on a stacked card on Showtime live from the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.
Three fights are planned to be televised with a main event featuring the always entertaining Adrien Broner and former World Title Challenger Jessie Vargas. Jermall Charlo will also be fighting on the card for the vacant WBC Interim Middleweight Title. Gervonta Davis will also be taking on Jesus Cuellar for the WBA Junior Lightweight Title.
Photo Credit: Jose Pineiro/SHOWTIME
The undercard will feature boxers such as former Olympian Rau’shee Warren, two sport star Heather Hardy, as well as Dylan Price.
The following is a preview of the three televised bouts.
Gervonta Davis (19-0) vs. Jesus Cuellar(28-2); WBA Regular Junior Lightweight Title
The opening bout of the night will be between Gervonta Davis, one of The Money Team’s best fighters in their stable, and Jesus Cuellar, a top contender in the featherweight division moving up to the junior lightweight division.
Davis is known for his knockout power, only of his opponents was able to make it to the final bell and he’s currently riding a ten fight win streak. However, Cuellar also has some power in his hands and has twenty one stoppage victories, though most of them came at a lighter weight.
Davis has been fairly active and fought three times in 2017 and twice in 2016. He is also eight years younger than Cuellar and will only be giving up a half an inch in reach and height. Cuellar has been very in active and did not fight in 2017 and only fought once in 2016.
Cuellar competed for Argentina at the Pan American Games several times as an amateur and Davis was able to win a National Golden Gloves Title.
Davis has defeated the likes of Francisco Fonseca, Liam Walsh, Jose Pedraza, and Cristobal Cruz. Cuellar has beaten the likes of Jonathan Oquendo, Vic Darchinyan, Ruben Tamayo, Juan Manuel Lopez, and Rico Ramos. His losses were to Oscar Escandon and Abner Mares.
This will be a good test for Davis, as Cuellar is a solid fighter with good technique who has been in the ring with several high level boxers. Both boxers are southpaws so it will be interesting to see if Davis can adjust to facing a southpaw. But Davis is simply too young and too powerful for Cuellar and he should be able to overwhelm Cuellar by the middle rounds.
Jermall Charlo (26-0) vs. Hugo Centeno (26-1); WBC Interim Middleweight Title
Jermall Charlo and Huge Centeno looks like it could be the most competitive bout of the night. Both boxers are twenty sveen years old and both only fought once in 2017 and twice in 2016.
Charlo is the bigger puncher of the two, as he has twenty stoppage victories, including four of his past five fights. Centeno only has fourteen stoppage victories. His lone loss was also by stoppage.
Charlo will be giving up two inches in reach and about an inch and a half in height to Centeno.
Both boxers had relatively successful amateur careers, but Centeno has a slight edge in terms of success. Charlo has a reported record of 65-6 as an amateur, while Centeno was very successful in the Junior Olympics, National PAL Tournament, and other National Tournaments in the United States.
Charlo has the better resume of the two. He has defeated Jorge Sebastian Heilan, Julian Williams, Austin Trout, Wilky Campfort, and Cornelius Bundrage. Centeno has defeated the likes of James De La Rosa and Immanuwel Aleem. His lone loss was to Maciej Sulecki.
The longer this fight goes the better the chances are of Centeno pulling off an upset. However, the Charlo brothers have been very impressive in the ring recently and should be considered to be the favorite.
Adrien Broner (33-3) vs. Jessie Vargas (28-2); Welterweight Division
The main event of the evening will be between the always controversial Adrien Broner and the very sound Jessie Vargas.
Both boxers are 28 years old, but Vargas will have a large four inch height advantage and a two inch reach advantage. They both also only fought three times in the past two years, Broner fought twice in 2017 and once in 2016, while Vargas fought once in 2017 and twice in 2016.
Broner has the clear edge in power of the two. He has twenty four stoppage wins to his credit while Vargas only has ten. They both had successful amateur careers. Broner was a National Silver Gloves Champion and had an amateur record of 300-19. Vargas was a two time Mexican National Champion and a two time US Junior National Champion and had an amateur record of 120-20.
Broner resume looks much better at the lighter weights in comparison to the heavier weight classes. His wins were over the likes of Adrian Granados, Ashley Theophane, Khabib Allakhverdiev, John Molina Jr., Carlos Molina, Paul Malignaggi, Antonio DeMarco, and Daniel Ponce De Leon. He has losses to Mikey Garcia, Shawn Porter, and Marcos Maidana.
Vargas has defeated the likes of Sadam Ali, Antonio DeMarco, Khabib Allakhverdiev, Wale Omotoso, and Josesito Lopez. His losses were to Manny Pacquiao and Timothy Bradley Jr.
Broner has been facing a lot of out of the ring issues recently and it may affect him on Saturday night. Vargas isn’t known for his power or an aggressive style that has been known to give Broner problems, but technically he’s sound and this writer has to give him a slight edge on Saturday night.
Gervonta Davis Feels He is the One To Become the next American PPV Superstar
Gervonta “Tank” Davis is working his way and building towards becoming the next American PPV superstar in boxing. His next step towards that journey is a chance to become a two time world champion when he faces former champion Jesus Cuellar (28-2, 21 KOs) this Saturday at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn. In what the organizers of the event say is for the vacant WBA Super World super featherweight title. That is confusing since the WBA already promised not to create anymore title belts and if this bout is truly for the vacant Super title then Alberto Machado the current world champion for the WBA at super featherweight has been downgraded to regular title holder, in favor of Davis challenging Cuellar who hasn’t fought in 16 months and is coming off a loss in a lower weight category.
Nevertheless, Davis (19-0, 18 KOs) is a significant favorite to win the bout, but admits he hasn’t done much studying of his next opponent.
Photo Credit: Jose Pineiro/SHOWTIME
““I’m not really into researching my opponents—or other fighters other than the ones that I like. I just train hard and fight who is in front of me. I know a little bit about him [Jesus Cuellar]. I know that he can hit, that he’s not going to back down and that he’s a tough opponent. I believe he’s my toughest opponent to date. On April 21, we will see if he is ready. I know for sure I will be,” Davis said.
Davis is coming off his best year as a professional prize fighter winning his first world title last January when he stopped previously undefeated Jose Pedraza in 7 rounds. He followed that up with an impressive stoppage win over mandatory challenger Liam Walsh in less than three rounds in his opponent’s backyard. However, he ended the year with a minor setback in losing his world title on the scales and not having the most impressive performance against the undefeated but unheralded Francisco Fonseca.
Because of the minor setback, Davis has decided to make a change heading into his second world title opportunity by heading to West Palm Beach to join veteran trainer Kevin Cunningham and train alongside with former 4 division world champion Adrien Broner.
““I was actually going to go to Colorado to train, but Adrien invited me to come down here to West Palm Beach to check out the camp. He said I should come to Florida to train with him and Kevin. So I came down, I saw Kevin’s routine and I really liked it.
“There were a lot of distractions in Baltimore and I think they were a problem for me. I needed to straighten my head and focus on the things I have to work on. It was time to set my camp somewhere else.
“I needed a change after my last fight. I let myself down. I learned to be a different fighter, more responsible. I let others down, but think I let myself down more than anything,” Davis said.
With the change of scenery and more added discipline, expect a more explosive performance this time around from Tank Davis this Saturday. What the future holds for this exciting young fighter is what’s truly intriguing as rumblings that a falling out with current promoter Floyd Mayweather could perhaps produce a change in representation for the career of Tank Davis in the near future.
Whatever happens, Davis obviously feels he’s the one, the next great American PPV superstar the boxing world is searching for.
““I want to win more belts. I want to become a big star in boxing. I am going to put my work in the gym, put on a great performance in the ring and get back on track to become a world champion again.
“Being a world champion again is just a step closer towards my goal: I want to be a pay-per-view star. I want to be able to fight on pay-per-view against the big fighters and do big numbers,” Davis said.
Mayweather vs. McGregor PPV Undercard Results: Davis and Badou Jack Win by Stoppage, Tabiti Decisions Cunningham
By: William Holmes
The T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada was the host site for tonight’s Showtime PPV attraction between all-time great Floyd Mayweather Jr. and UFC super star Conor McGregor.
Fight fans were treated to three bouts on the televised portion of the pay per view card, including two world title fights.
Photo Credit: USA Today
The first fight of the night was between Andrew Tabiti (14-0) and Steve Cunningham (29-8-1) in the cruiserweight division.
Cunningham is a former world champion in the cruiserweight division and Tabiti is prized prospect in the Mayweather Promotions stable.
Cunningham had the height advantage and looked to be in great shape. Tabiti was able to stay out of range in the first two rounds, but Cunningham was the more aggressive fighter and forced Tabiti to tie up often. Tabiti’s jab was landing in the second round and he landed a hard right uppercut at the end of a combination.
Cunningham’s punches were missing with increasing regularity from the first round to the fourth round and Tabiti remained an elusive target. Tabiti’s hands were faster and more accurate but Cunningham’s chin was able to take his best punches.
The fifth round featured two blistering combinations by Tabiti in the center of the ring. Tabiti was able to land his jab to the body and head of Cunningham in the sixth round. Cunningham’s frustration with his inability to mount an offensive attack continued into the seventh round.
Cunningham, to his credit, still came forward in the eighth round despite clearly being behind on the cards. He was able to force a few exchanges but Tabiti got the better of them.
Cunningham needed a knockout in the final two rounds to win the fight, but that knockout never came.
Andrew Tabiti remained undefeated with a decision victory with scores of 97-93, 97-93, and 100-90.
Nathan Cleverly (30-3) faced Badou Jack (21-1-2) for the WBA Light Heavyweight Title.
Jack established himself as the more accurate puncher in the first round and was able to do land some good body shots in the opening round. Cleverly looked like the bigger fight and was able to land some hard straight right hands at the end of the round.
Jack continued his body attack in the second round and he was able to land hard right uppercuts in the third round. Jack’s assault was more vicious in the fourth round and he had Cleverly’s nose busted from numerous uppercuts and left hooks.
Jack came out aggressively in the fifth round and obliterated Cleverly from corner to corner. Cleverly was taking several hard combinations without answering back. The referee let Jack batter Cleverly perhaps longer than he should have, but he finally stopped it near the end of the round.
Badou Jack wins the WBA Light Heavyweight by TKO at 2:47 of the fifth round.
Afterwards, Badou Jack called out Adonis Stevenson.
The final undercard bout was between Gervonta Davis (18-0) and Francisco Fonseca (19-0-1). This bout was supposed to be for the IBF Super Featherweight Title but Davis failed to make the contracted weight.
Fonseca looked awkward in the first round and Davis was able to land hooks and uppercuts to the body. Fonseca ate some heavy combinations in the second round but was able to take some of Davis’ best shots and reply with punches of his own.
Fonseca kept a high guard in the second round but had to absorb blows to the body. Davis began to showboat in the fourth round and landed a few left hooks after putting his hands behind his back, but Fonseca connected with enough punches to maybe steal the round.
Fonseca pressed the action in the fifth round and landed some good combinations to the head and body. Davis was telegraphing his punches and may have lost this round solely based on Fonseca’s activity.
Davis stopped showing off in the sixth round and stuck to a traditional boxing stance and was able to land sharp jabs and hard straight left hands. Davis finally stunned Fonseca in the seventh round with hard hooks but Fonseca stayed on his feet.
Davis opened up the eighth round with a stunning straight left hand and had Fonseca stuck in the corner. He connected with a left hook that may have landed on the back of Fonseca’s head, but Fonseca went to the mat holding the back of his head and was unable to get up.
Gervonta Davis wins by knockout at 0:39 of the eighth round.
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Showtime World Championship Boxing Preview: Gary Russell Jr. vs. Oscar Escandon
Showtime World Championship Boxing Preview: Gary Russell Jr. vs. Oscar Escandon
By: Seamus McNally
On Saturday night, WBC featherweight champion “Mr.” Gary Russell Jr. (27–1, 16 KOs) of Capitol Heights, Md. makes his long-awaited home debut when he takes Colombia’s Oscar Escandon (25–2, 17 KOs) at the MGM National Harbor in Oxon Hill, Md.
Photo Credit: Tom Casino/Showtime
The bout caps the night of a split-site four fight broadcast on Showtime Championship Boxing. First up, IBF junior lightweight champion Gervonta “Tank” Davis (17–0, 16 KOs) of Baltimore, Md. travels across the pond into hostile territory to risk his undefeated record against fellow unbeaten Liam Walsh (21–0, 14 KOs) at the Copper Box Arena in London. Once that bout is complete, the televised bouts from the MGM National Harbor will commence.
The first televised fight in Maryland will be a 12-round junior welterweight title eliminator between Cuba’s Rances Barthelemy (25–0, 13 KOs), who will be moving up from lightweight, and Kiryl Relikh (21–1, 19 KOs) of Belarus. The co-feature bout is a 12-rounder for the interim IBF super middleweight title between Andre Dirrell (25–2, 16 KOs) of Flint, Mich. and Venezuelan Jose Uzcategui (26–1, 22 KOs).
Russell, 28, entered the professional ranks in 2009 with high expectations, having won numerous amateur national titles, earning a bronze medal in the 2007 world amateur championships, and making the 2008 U.S. Olympic Team.
Russell was a very active fighter early in his career, and by the end of his third year as a professional, he had accumulated a record of 19–0, 11 KOs and was named 2011 Prospect of the Year by the likes of ESPN, Ring Magazine, and Sports Illustrated.
After padding his record for a few more years against modest opposition, Russell got his first crack at a world title in June 2014 against two-time Olympic gold medalist Vasyl Lomachenko. Russell was outclassed and lost a 12-round decision.
Russell won a shutout decision against Christopher Martin that December and then got his second chance at a world title in March 2015. The outcome was different this time as Russell blitz WBC champion Jhonny Gonzalez en route to a fourth-round knockout win.
In his most recent fight, Russell obliterated the overmatched Patrick Hyland in the second round of their fight, which took place 13 months ago in April 2016.
Escandon, 32, was an Olympian himself, representing Colombia in the 2004 Athens Games. Unlike Russell, Escandon entered the paid ranks inconspicuously, building his record in his homeland save for two fights in Argentina and two in Panama before making his U.S. debut in 2014.
By the time Escandon reached U.S. soil, he sported a record of 23–1, 16 KOs. In his U.S. debut in December 2014 on ESPN Friday Night Fights, Escandon was awarded a very controversial decision over Canadian Tyson Cave that elicited an epic rant from color commentator Teddy Atlas once the decision was rendered.
Like Russell, Escandon fought only once in each of the last two years. In April 2015, Escandon lost a close split decision to the undefeated Moises Flores. In his most recent fight, which took place in March 2016 at the D.C. Armory, Escandon scored a seventh-round knockout of Mexico’s Robinson Castellanos.
For the first time in a long while, Russell will enjoy a height advantage in the fight. Escandon is one of the shortest fighters in all of boxing, standing at just 5’1″. Because of his short stature, Escandon tends to throw looping shots to try and reach his opponents’ heads. He puts constant pressure on his opponents, always moving forward. Escandon does not move his head much, as he usually just holds his gloves up, blocking and eating punches as he tries to walk his opponents down to get in punching range.
Russell has arguably the fastest hands in all of boxing, and knows how to use it. Some fighters rely too much on their speed and are not technically sound and get caught (Amir Khan), whereas Russell patiently sets up his shots, and is almost never out of position.
Escandon has one chance to win this fight. The only knock on Russell is that he always throws his punches at the same speed, never varies them up. The saying is timing beats speed, so Escandon may be able to time one of Russell’s punches and connect flush with a looping shot over the top and hurt Russell.
I look for Russell to establish his sharp jab early, and use good lateral movement to keep the charging Escandon at bay. Russell will take out Escandon in the middle rounds, as the blazing combinations will be too much for Escandon to withstand.
Is Floyd Mayweather Jr. going ALL IN with Gervonta Davis?
Is Floyd Mayweather Jr. going ALL IN with Gervonta Davis?
By: Matthew N. Becher
Ever since the beginning of boxing the future stars of the sport are always compared to their counterparts of the past. Who is the next Sugar Ray Robinson, Muhammad Ali, Mike Tyson, etc., etc. It is something that goes hand in hand with the history of the sport, the same as “WHO” of this era could beat “WHO” of that era. It is a fictional dialogue that will never cease to exist.
Photo Credit: Lawrence Lustig/Showtime
The interesting part about one of the fights coming up this weekend is, has a fighter ever been mentored by who they are being compared to, and if so, have they ever been managed and promoted by their past comparisons?
This Saturday undefeated, IBF Super featherweight champion, Gervonta Davis will be defending his title for the first time against Liam Walsh. Davis, who is only 22 years old with an unblemished record of 17 wins with 16 coming by way of Knockout , is one of the fastest, flashiest and well poised champions around today. For a 22 year old, he is years beyond his skill and looks to have the potential of an all-time great. Now here is the kicker, “Flashy”, “Fast”, “Young”, all these words were also used to describe Gervonta’s promoter, Floyd Mayweather Jr. And the question has certainly come up, is Davis the next “Money” Mayweather?
From watching Davis train in front of him at the Mayweather Boxing Club, to going on late night runs side by side through the Las Vegas streets, Floyd Mayweather seems much more hands on with Gervonta Davis then he has been with any other of his TMT fighters.
“It’s not just one performance. It takes more than just one performance. We truly believe that he can be a great fighter, but he came in his last fight with only 16 fights and beat the champion. We know he’s not going to lay down. This kid has dynamite in both hands. If he keeps going out there beating great fighters he cannot be denied.” Floyd said of Davis. “’ I told him, ‘if you listen to me and continue to work hard I truly believe you can be world champion within 24 months.’ And that’s just one stepping stone.”
Floyd seems to be 100% Gervonta Davis at the moment. Taking time from speaking about his fight with Connor McGregor to fly across the pond and work with Davis.
Gervonta is not only a young champion like Floyd was, but Davis is doing something that Floyd never did in his illustrious career and that is fight on foreign soil. We will see how Davis does this weekend against Liam Walsh, and if the kid from Baltimore can continue his own historical rise.
Showtime World Championship Boxing Preview: Jose Pedraza vs. Gervonta Davis, James DeGale vs. Badou Jack
Showtime World Championship Boxing Preview: Jose Pedraza vs. Gervonta Davis, James DeGale vs. Badou Jack
By: William Holmes
On Saturday night the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York will host a WBC/IBF Super Middleweight Unification Title fight between Badou Jack and James DeGale to be televised live on the Showtime Cable Network.
This bout will help determine who the true number one boxer is in the super middleweight division since Andre Ward bumped up to the light heavyweight division.
Another bout scheduled for Saturday will be between Jose Pedraza and Floyd Mayweather Jr. promoted Gervonta Davis for Pedraza’s IBF Junior Lightweight Title. This bout should open up the Showtime broadcast.
The following is a preview of Saturday’s card.
Jose Pedraza (22-0) vs. Gervonta Davis (16-0); IBF Junior Lightweight Title
This is an intriguing matchup between two young upcoming stars in boxing with a bright future ahead of them. It’s also interesting because both boxers have had some much publicized issues with their management teams in the months coming into this fight. It’s been alleged that Pedraza wasn’t completely pleased with his lack of activity underneath the management of Al Haymon, and it’s also been alleged that there was some friction between Gervonta Davis and his promoter, Floyd Mayweather Jr.
However, those issues appear to have been resolved to allow this matchup to take place.
The most noticeable difference between the two boxers on Saturday will be the difference in size. Pedraza will have a two and a half inch height advantage over Davis and will also have about an inch and a half reach advantage. Pedraza is also five years older than Davis, and is experienced enough to deal with the southpaw style that troubles many boxers.
Pedraza does have an edge in amateur experience. Davis did well on the national level; he was a 2012 National Golden Gloves Champion, a three time National Silver Gloves Champion, and a two time PAL Champion. But, Pedraza competed on the international stage as an amateur and represented Puerto Rico in the 2008 Summer Olympics. Valuable international experience that Davis does not appear to have.
Davis has been the more active boxer between the two. He fought five times in 2015 and twice in 2016. Pedraza only fought twice in 2015 and once in 2016.
Davis is also the more powerful puncher/knockout artist. He has stopped fifteen of his opponents. He has defeated the likes of Marco Antonio Macias, Guillermo Avila, Luis Sanchez, and Cristobal Cruz.
Pedraza only has twelve stoppages on his resume. He has defeated the likes of Stephen Smith, Edner Cherry, Andrey Klimov, Michael Farenas, and Tevin Farmer.
This will be an entertaining bout between power and technique, and it should be a close one. But Pedraza has faced better opposition both as an amateur and a professional, and that experience alone gives him a slight edge going into their fight on Saturday.
Badou Jack (20-1-2) vs. James DeGale (23-1) WBC/IBF Super Middleweight Titles
This is one of the best bouts that could be made in the super middleweight division, and the winner should be considered by most to be the best super middleweight.
Both boxers are beginning to leave their prime ages as Jack is thirty three years old and DeGale is thirty years old. Neither boxer is known for their power, as Jack only has twelve stoppage victories and DeGale has fourteen stoppage victories.
Even though both boxers are at the top of their weight division, neither fighter has been very active. Jack fought once in 2016 and twice in 2015, and DeGale also fought once in 2016 and twice in 2015.
Both boxers have a deep amateur background. Jack represented Gambia in the 2008 Summer Olympics and DeGale represented Great Britain in the 2008 Summer Olympics. However, only DeGale medaled as he won the gold medal.
Jack has defeated the likes of Lucian Bute, George Groves, Anthony Dirrell, Rogelio Medina, Marco Antonio Periban, and Farah Ennis. His lone loss was an upset loss to Derek Edwards which he lost by TKO.
DeGale has defeated the likes of Rogelio Medina, Lucian Bute, Andre Dirrell, Marco Antonio Periban, Gevorg Khatchikian, and Dyah Davis. His lone loss was the George Groves.
Even though this is a good matchup, it will likely not be a fan pleasing fight as both boxers are technically skilled fighters that are not known for their power. DeGale has experienced more success as an amateur than Jack, and that indicates that he’s the better technical boxer.
DeGale should win by a close decision on Saturday night.