Coach Calvin Ford has known Adrien Broner for a long time, as has the trainer’s No. 1 protege, WBA lightweight titleholder Gervonta “Tank” Davis. 

When Davis was a prospect, Broner often brought him around.

Broner looks to reignite his career on June 7 as he faces Blair Cobbs at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Hollywood, Florida.

Yet Broner (35-4-1, 24 KOs) is no longer considered a future star. At 34, he now faces questions about his relevance in the sport. Cobbs (16-1-1, 10 KOs) might be the same age, but doubts persist about Broner’s lifestyle. Broner hasn’t won a world-level fight since 2017 against Adrian Granados, which was a split decision. He lost to Mikey Garcia and Manny Pacquiao. He drew with Jessie Vargas. Even his win over Jovanie Santiago was lackluster, as the Showtime broadcast favored Santiago’s clean punching. 

Though Broner won a 10-round unanimous decision over Bill Hutchinson in June, Hutchinson was not a distinguished professional boxer. Ford sees the fight with Cobbs as something deeper, while referencing Broner’s first coach, Michael Stafford.

“This is a blessing to my man, Mike,” said Ford at Broner's media workout on Tuesday night. “Look who is standing in front of me.

“When that night gets here, I can’t wait for him to put on that fantastic artwork. He ain’t going nowhere.”

Broner is now training with Ford in Las Vegas, no longer working with Kevin Cunningham. Broner is on a two-fight win streak but has faced a slew of inactivity, having only fought twice since January 2019. He is also in camp with Davis as “Tank” prepares for a fight with Frank Martin on June 15. 

“If everybody knew the story of how we came together,” Ford continued. “They don’t get it; it was meant to be this way.”

Ford reflected on a recent memory of Davis coaching one of his friends in the gym against Broner. The story merited a smile and a laugh from both Ford and Broner. Ford sees the bond and close, family-like atmosphere having an influence on Broner, who he believes will show shades of the fighter who beat Antonio DeMarco in 2012.

“It was fun and exciting,” said Ford. “Look at him [Broner] smiling, so I know he is in a good space.”