Gervonta Davis, Ryan Garcia echo superstars from the past by agreeing to fight each other at their peaks

Gervonta “Tank” Davis and Ryan Garcia are meeting at a press conference on Thursday in New York City to kick off publicity for their April 22 fight in Las Vegas. (Amanda Westcott/Showtime)

Calvin Ford, trainer of the undefeated Gervonta “Tank” Davis, didn’t say much at Wednesday’s kickoff press conference in New York for Davis’ April 22 super lightweight fight at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas against Ryan Garcia. but what he said captured the moment perfectly.

Davis and Garcia have long wanted to fight each other, but Showtime Sports President Steven Espinoza noted that there were people trying to convince both fighters to fight someone else. Davis and Garcia were resilient, and more than two months after the fight was first announced, it was over.

Ford led Davis to a 28-0 record with 26 knockouts and world championships at 130 and 135 pounds. However, if Davis was criticized, it was that his competitive level was not the best. Fighting Garcia, he faces the best opponent of his career, a 23-0 guy with 19 knockouts, extremely fast hands and rare strength.

“These two are bringing boxing back,” Ford said. “You will feel this energy. These are two great fighters. You all made this possible.”

The last sentence is “You all made this possible.” was the money line.

This fight will take place because Davis and Garcia insisted on it. They wanted to fight each other and didn’t want any more tuning, intermediate fights, or full-time fights, which is often a good way to say that they were tired of looking at cans of tomatoes that had no hope of defeating them. They wanted to enter the ring knowing they could lose if they weren’t at their best. It was because of this energy that Sugar Ray Leonard was able to rally late to come back and defeat Thomas Hearns in their first fight in 1981. That is why the first fight between Alexis Argüello and Aaron Pryor is remembered with such fondness. They didn’t have to fight each other, but they fought, and each fought like a maniac, trying to win.

For the record, Pryor won, but no one lost that night. Boxing won, as did its fans, simply because these two great athletes took unnecessary risks and fought with the heart, soul and passion that would make them superstars for the next four decades in eternity.

The greatness of a fighter is shown in a clash with the best. Look at the greatest who ever did it, guys like Sugar Ray Robinson, Muhammad Ali and Leonard, and you will see that they have one thing in common – their level of resistance: times.

We live in an age where boxing managers and promoters are willing to coddle their fighters, feed them top level opponents, create dubious if not fake records, and not take risks until absolutely necessary.

It is this idea that has so far prevented welterweights Errol Spence Jr. and Terence Crawford from fighting for the undisputed title and still has prevented heavyweights Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk from facing each other.

Talking about big fights is tedious and often ridiculous, and has brought fight fans to tears. But this is what has become the norm in our time. Luckily, Davis and Garcia foresaw this.

Gervonta Davis expects his April 22 fight in Las Vegas with Ryan Garcia to be explosive.  (Amanda Westcott/Showtime)
Gervonta Davis expects his April 22 fight in Las Vegas with Ryan Garcia to be explosive. (Amanda Westcott/Showtime)

“This is a defining moment in our career,” Garcia said. “It’s about heritage. It’s about who really wants the crown. Tank has the image of a destructive puncher. He is an excellent fighter. I find out inside myself what kind of fighter I am after this fight. always wanted.

“I just didn’t want to risk an intermediate fight before that. There are many little things that can happen. I didn’t wait that long to ruin everything at the finish line.”

After eliminating Javier Fortuna in July, Garcia called out Davis. He made a media detour to highlight the point and continued to support it on social media. He literally won’t be denied.

The fact that Davis didn’t have the strongest opponent at that point in his career certainly can’t be tied to him. As soon as he found out about Garcia’s interest in fighting him, he agreed. And when the negotiations went awry, Davis also ordered his team to keep working so that the fight with Garcia would take place.

Davis is a strong contender, and he understood the moment. He proved himself a champion by accepting Garcia’s challenge and not allowing anyone to distract from the fight.

“This fight is definitely going to be tough,” Davis said. “But that’s what we came for. We want big fights. I have been boxing since the age of 7. In the future, I fought a lot. I’m just happy to be a part of this moment and share the ring with a young fighter like Ryan Garcia who dares to be great. He paved his way into this fight. April 22, he will have to show it.

“…I think it’s important because we’re both young. We are both at our peak. Many young fighters don’t fight each other. We’ve both made a name for ourselves and the time has come. We are both great fighters and we put everything on the line.”

In the modern era, it takes a lot of people to put on a fight of this magnitude. But that never happens unless the fighters insist on it.

There were plenty of opportunities for Davis and Garcia to walk away and fight someone else, someone who was less of a threat to his perfect track record. None of them would agree to this.

Now there is finally a classic fighting set for boxing fans. Regardless of whose hand is raised late on April 22, it’s important to remember that thanks to Davis and Garcia’s perseverance, there will be no losers tonight.


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