Advertisement: IBO Boxing

Ellerbe: Gervonta Davis is 'Hands-Down' The Best at 130-Pounds

By Lem Satterfield

“Gervonta Davis is, hands-down, the best 130-pounder in the world,” said Leonard Ellerbe, CEO of Mayweather Promotions. “He’s the biggest star of the division, and he’ll get his chance to showcase that very soon.”

A two-time 130-pound champion, Davis (20-0, 19 KOs) told on Tuesday that will pursue his 12th straight knockout and second defense of his WBA “super” super featherweight crown against three-division champion Abner Mares (31-3-1, 15 KOs), who will make his 130-pound debut.

Ellerbe would not comment on the exact date or venue for Davis' return. But The Los Angeles Times’ Lance Pugmire indicated February 9 to be the date, and the venue to be in Southern California near the hometown of Mares, who turns 33 on November 28 and is 5-for-5 against southpaw opponents since 2008.


Cuellar was the lone fight of 2018 for “Tank” Davis, a stocky, 5-foot-5 ½ southpaw from Baltimore who displayed speed, power and superior boxing skills during stoppage victories in January, May and August 2017.

“Definitely for Gervonta 2018 was a wash for a number of reasons, and I think that [Davis] has expressed that in the interviews that he’s done,” said Ellerbe of Davis, who turned 24 on November 7.

“But we’re really happy about what’s gonna happen in 2019. Looking  back at 2017, he had three fights by September 1. In 2019, he’s gonna be very active just like he was in 2017.”

Davis is coming off a title-regaining two-knockdown third-round TKO of fellow southpaw Jesus Cuellar (28-3, 21 KOs), of Buenos Aires, Argentina, whose 130-pound debut ended a 16-month ring absence since falling in December 2016 by split-decision to Mares and being dethroned as WBA 126-pound champion.

In victory over Cuellar, Davis returned to Barclays Center  in Brooklyn, New York, where a then-22-year-old became the youngest reigning champion in January 2017 with a seventh-round knockout that dethroned switch-hitting IBF titleholder Jose Pedraza.

For his initial IBF title defense in May 2017, Davis traveled to London, where he dropped and stopped previously undefeated southpaw Liam Walsh (21-1, 14 KOs) in the third round in front of Walsh’s hometown fans.

But Davis lost his crown on the scales before his second defense in August, an eighth-round knockout victory over Francisco Fonseca (22-1-1, 16 KOs) on the under card of Floyd Mayweather’s 10th-round TKO of Conor McGregor.

For Cuellar, Davis switched trainers to Kevin Cunningham from career-long corner man Calvin Ford, who served as an assistant. Cunningham was prophetic when he vowed that Davis would “obliterate” Cuellar, coming full circle by becoming a repeat 130-pound champion where he had earned his first crown.

“I’m very happy with Gervonta’s mindset, where he’s at, and what’s going to happen in 2019,” said Ellerbe. “We’re just very excited about him getting back out there, doing what he does, and that’s putting on these electrifying performances.”

Plans are for Davis to unify the division, said Ellerbe.

The WBC’s Miguel Berchelt (35-1, 31 KOs) has won 14 straight, including 13 by knockout, having made his sixth defense and scored his third consecutive stoppage in the ninth round of his last fight on November 3 against Miguel Roman.

Fonseca has rebounded with three straight knockouts and challenges IBF 130-pound champion Tevon Farmer (27-4-1, 6 KOs) on December 15. WBO counterpart Masayuki Ito (24-1-1, 12 KOs) of Japan meets Evgeny Chuprakov (20-0, 10 KOs) on December 30.

Last month left-handed WBA “regular” champion Alberto Merchado (21-0, 17 KOs) scored three knockdowns during a first-round stoppage of Yuandale Evans in his second defense.

“We’re going to line these guys up and knock them down, one-by-one in no particular order,” said Ellerbe.

“We’re very confident that [Davis] is the best 130-pounder in the world.”

User Comments and Feedback
Comment by DuckAdonis on 11-24-2018

He has to prove it first

Comment by alexguiness on 11-24-2018

Ellerbe reaches for the coconut oil...he has a new twink in town.

Comment by Ogecca MaMa on 11-24-2018

this doesnt make mae excited at all, when people run their mouth whether its boxer himself or promoter. yet, Gervonta fought what, once last year? and going to fight another " vicious beast" Mares. zZzz

Comment by Squ□redCircle34 on 11-23-2018

It’s time, he needs to start experiencing being tested, he was only tested once and it was against Pedraza The Sniper who fought a stupid fight! I think with his talent and growing skill set he can def clear 130,…

Comment by Sid-Knee on 11-23-2018

Tank needs to get fights on with Machedo and Berchelt to really show us his worth, because lower weight fighters who are past their best and coming off losses isn't going to do it.

Top Headlines
Fury: I've Only Just Started; We're Gonna Be Putting People To Sleep! Wilder: I Wanna Go Out On My Shield; Death Is Better Than Defeat Fury-Wilder Produced Just Over 750,000 PPV Buys; Could Reach 800,000 Capetillo: Breland Did Right Thing, Fury Would Have Hurt Wilder Bad TJ Doheny is Eager To Put on a Show in Dubai Mikey Garcia: Vargas Will Be Coming For a KO Win - Me Too! Andy Ruiz: Tyson Fury Can Do Same Thing Again - And I Can Too! Roy Jones Jr. Tabs Kevin Newman To Become World Champion Reigniting Super Fly After a Breather Hearn Still Not Sure If Canelo Will Fight Saunders Or Callum Smith Robles Likes Andy Ruiz's Chances Against Luis Ortiz Joseph Parker, Shawndell Winters - Face-Off, Final Presser Julio Cesar Martinez, Jay Harris - Face-Off, Final Presser Chocolatito, Kal Yafai - Face To Face, Final Presser Mikey Garcia, Jessie Vargas - Face To Face, Final Presser Eleider Alvarez-Joe Smith Eliminator Ordered After Gilberto Ramirez Bails Subriel Matias' Promoter is Furious Over Lack of Training Whyte: Fury Slapped Deontay Wilder About Like He Was His Bitch Bellew: If That Fury Showed Up - I Wouldn't Have Stood a Chance Marc Castro Inks Promotional Pact With Eddie Hearn Joshua's Trainer: Unfication With Tyson Fury Has To Happen! Apti Davtaev vs. Lucas Browne on Showtime, Otto Wallin Injured Referee on Deontay Wilder: I Was Close To Stopping The Fight Wilder: Bleeding From Ear Didn't Affect Me At All; No Eardrum Damage Vergil Ortiz Jr. Ready To Graduate To Contender Level Versus Vargas Wilder: By Third Round, My Legs Was Fully Gone; Surprised I Went That Long Weekend Rout Beat The Necessity Out of Fury-Wilder Rivalry Terri Harper's Manager Talks Unification Victory, Future Plans Coldwell Confident Leigh Wood Will Bounce Back After Defeat Hearn is More Than Ready To Make Kell Brook vs. Liam Smith Roach: Wilder Took a Beating, Right Hand Stayed Home That Night News: Cletus Seldin Update, Romero Duno, James Bacon, More Breland Was Looking Out For Deontay Wilder's Best Interests Wilder: Wearing Heavy Outfit 'Something That I'll Never Do Again' Xander Zayas Putting in Work For Debut in Puerto Rico Roy Jones: Fury is Not All-Time Great, Wilder's Record is Lacking First Boxers To Qualify For Olympics To Be Decided on Wednesday Vergil Ortiz, Samuel Vargas - Face To Face at LA Presser Fury-Wilder II Prelims Average 1.42 Million Viewers Across ESPN, Fox Sports Platforms Warren: Fury is #1 Heavyweight, Joshua is Spoiled Goods
Latest Forum Threads