LAS VEGAS – It has nothing to do with the volume of signage around MGM Grand.

It has everything to do with activity – something Gervonta “Tank” Davis clearly wants to display tonight as he defends his WBA lightweight belt against unbeaten Frank Martin and perhaps sets in motion an onslaught of major bouts.

And while the biggest fight that David Benavidez wants eludes him, how he has responded says everything about the character of the 27-year-old Phoenix fighter who aims to supplant Saul “Canelo” Alvarez as the face of boxing.

Those were the takeaways on Friday’s episode of ProBox TV’s “Deep Waters,” as analysts Paulie Malignaggi and Chris Algieri set the stage for tonight’s pay-per-view (Amazon Prime Video,, which marks the 100th championship fight card at venerable MGM Grand Garden Arena.

Malignaggi said, “On one degree, I don’t blame Davis” for being irked that his likeness was not plastered on the hotel casino the way the building used to do for Davis’ former promoter, Floyd Mayweather Jr., and others – a detail that prompted the 29-year-old Davis to skip Tuesday’s grand arrivals.

The greater issue, said Malignaggi, is that the supremely talented knockout artist has squandered some of the momentum from his scintillating April 2023 knockout of Ryan Garcia by being out of the ring since.

“Dude, you’re fighting once every 15 months. What do you want?” Malignaggi said. “Promote yourself first.

“If Davis is pulling out all the stops to promote himself and keeping up with his [fight-week] schedule and making sure he’s one of boxing’s biggest stars – which he has the potential to be – OK. But if he doesn’t promote the right way, more power to you, dude.”

Malignaggi elaborated: “The centerpiece of promotability is being busy, beating tough opposition.

“Yes, I would agree that this fight could’ve been promoted better. But, dude, you’ve got to start with yourself.”

Davis is ideally positioned to do so.

After he underscored his comfort as a lightweight by weighing in at 133.4 pounds – easily under the 135-pound limit – there is mutual interest from Premier Boxing Champions and promoter Top Rank to see if a unification against IBF lightweight champion Vasiliy Lomachenko is possible by November, BoxingScene learned on Friday.

Lomachenko manager Egis Klimas told BoxingScene on Friday that he plans to discuss options with Lomachenko this coming week, including the matter of how they’ll navigate the automatic assignment of a mandatory IBF No. 1 contender, William Zepeda, who is scheduled to fight July 6 in Ontario, California.

As for Benavidez (28-0, 24 KOs), his promoter, Sampson Lewkowicz, and father-trainer, Jose Benavidez Sr., told BoxingScene this week that he will announce after his co-main event against former light heavyweight titleholder Oleksandr Gvozdyk whether he plans to seek the WBC mandatory position to fight the winner of the Oct. 12 undisputed title fight between Artur Beterbiev and Dmitry Bivol or continue pressing for his mandatory to be enforced by the WBC against undisputed super middleweight champion Canelo Alvarez.

Benavidez has indicated at his news conference and other fight-week interviews that he is moving to light heavyweight.

In an interview with BoxingScene that aired on “Deep Waters,” Benavidez professed his readiness for Gvozdyk (20-1, 13 KOs) despite the disappointment over Alvarez’s disinterest and the looming bouts ahead.

“It’s easy to say” you’re focused on the fight at hand, “but a lot of guys don’t do that,” Algieri said after reviewing Benavidez’s interview. “David Benavidez answered every question perfectly. That’s exactly what you want to hear from a young champion, spot on, top to bottom: ‘I’m not looking past [Gvozdyk], I’m looking through him. I’m going to take him out.’

“That’s awesome. He’s supremely confident because he’s in shape. There’s no better confidence boost in the world than knowing at the end of training camp that things went well and you’re ready to rock. That man looks like he’s ready to rock.”