Boxing pundits wondered how Gervonta Davis would look after only fighting one time in 2018 and only twice in the last 18 months.
The 24-year-old didn’t miss a beat, as a combination that was capped off by a picture-perfect right hook sent late replacement Hugo Ruiz packing to secure the knockout at 2:59 of the first round and retain the WBA super featherweight championship at Dignity Health Sports Park in Carson, Calif.
Surrounded by dancers when he made his ring walk to Michael Jackson’s “Thriller,” Davis made sure he put on a show in his first headlining bout. Davis overwhelmed Ruiz from the opening bell and attacked from the opening bell with hard left hands to the body. The shots were having an effect as Ruiz continued to back into the ropes, which allowed Davis to tee off at will.
It wasn’t a matter of if, but when, Davis would put Ruiz out of his misery. He finished the job when a right hook went through Ruiz’s guard to stun him for a moment and sent him down to a knee. Although he made it to his feet, referee Jack Reiss sought to make sure Ruiz was okay to continue. Ruiz, who had a bloody nose, wouldn’t answer Reiss and the fight was called off.
— SHOWTIME Boxing (@ShowtimeBoxing) February 10, 2019
The big question now is if Davis (21-0, 20 KOs) will stay active in 2019? He’s vowed to fight at least three times, but he needs to show it. His lack of activity due to issues outside of the ring has been a problem for the budding star. In this day of age, people have short attention spans and a fighter of Davis’ caliber needs to stay in the public eye. As long as he stays active, superstardom shouldn’t be too far away because whenever Davis steps through the ropes, he’s one of the most exciting fighters in the sport. He’s quick, possesses solid technical skills and has raw power that you cannot teach.
Who doesn’t want to see Davis against WBC titlist Miguel Berchelt and IBF titleholder Tevin Farmer in unification bouts? Davis can be one of boxing’s best, but staying active and facing elite fighters regardless of who they are aligned with needs to be imperative. If he doe that, then Davis will get those accolades.
— SPORTING NEWS