It was the result we were all expecting, but it took much longer than any of us would have assumed.
Gervonta “Tank” Davis (23-0, 22 KOs) took 12 rounds before he could successfully close the show against the shop worn, Yuriorkis Gamboa (30-3, 18 KOs) at the State Farm Arena, in Atlanta, Georgia, on December 28, 2019.
The contest for Davis was his first in the Lightweight division. Many were expecting Davis to make quick work of Gamboa—but the former champion had other ideas.
The contest started off as most contests that Davis is a part of do. He scored a quick second-round knockdown in the match. From there, the end was imminent, or at least that’s what was believed.
Instead of closing the show, the rounds went by as Gamboa found a way to stay alive.
The contest was in no means a competitive one, but he did find ways to stay on his feet. Speaking of feet, Gamboa seemingly hurt his right achilles due to the first knockdown.
“I feel okay, but I think I ruptured my Achilles tendon before I fell in the second round,” said Gamboa after the fight. “I’m a warrior and I kept going, but as soon as I felt it I knew it was ruptured. I couldn’t put pressure on it.”
In the seventh round Gamboa found himself on the deck once more. If you guessed the contest would be over at this point, you would be wrong. Gamboa fought his way back to his feet and the contest continued.
Much of the bout turned into a restless affair. The amount of punches Davis threw were growing more sparse as the rounds went by. Davis also looked as though he was tiring out. If his conditioning was truly an issue it wouldn’t come as a surprise as he had trouble making the 135-pound weight limit.
Difficulties on the scale can be a common occurrence, but for Davis, this was his first contest at his new weight class. There was absolutely no reason for him to struggle as much as he did.
Entering the 12th round for the first time, Davis felt the pressure of keeping his knockout streak alive, a mark which stretches back as far as 2014. A left upper cut during the midway point did the job as Gamboa was unable to continue.
Final Grade for Gervonta Davis: C
There is no reason why a 25-year-old Davis should have struggled as much as he did with a 38 year old Gamboa, who is clearly past his prime.
Could it have been weight issues? A lack in power now that he has moved up in weight? Or maybe Davis just simply overlooked Gamboa.
Whatever the case was, it just wasn’t a good look for Davis.
If he’s the star many are pegging him to be in 2020, then he’ll need to show more focus and discipline going forward.