Gervonta Davis is walking around with a massive chip on his shoulder heading into his fight against Rolando Romero on Saturday night at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York on Showtime pay-per-view.
Davis (26-0, 24 KOs) had a 16-fight knockout streak dating back to 2014 snapped in December when he competitively fought through an injured left hand to score a close unanimous decision victory against Isaac Cruz. Prior to cutting it close with Cruz, Davis destroyed the likes of Mario Barrios of Leo Santa Cruz with spectacular knockouts.
Cruz was a replacement opponent for Romero at the time, and now that the lightweight fight with Romero has been rescheduled, “Tank” wants to torment his rival to further attain the approval of his doubters.
“I'm definitely excited to be back at the Barclays Center because I won my first title there. It's a great atmosphere there. I was 21, 22 when I first won my first title,” Davis said on the episode of the Showtime series “All Access.”
“I feel as though I'm comfortable now because I've been here for so long. You know what I mean? It's time to grow up, and become that young OG. Right now, the whole situation that's going on with boxing, I feel as though they sleeping on me. It's time to wake them up. I'm really who I say I am. And who these people say I am, I'm really that. So, I'm just waiting. Waiting on my moment to show 'em. So, I'm definitely like – they woke up the beast.”
Adding further fuel to Davis’ fire has been his uneven relationship with promoter Floyd Mayweather Jr. Over the last two months, Davis has fired off a series of since-deleted tweets taking shots at Mayweather and how his career is being handled.
After holding his last three training camps at Mayweather’s boxing gym in Las Vegas, the Baltimore-bred Davis switched camps to Miami in order to prepare for Romero, a Las Vegas native.
The promotion for the fight between the Mayweather Promotions stablemates has been a contentious one as well.
Not only does Davis want to make his detractors eat their words, but Romero as well.
“He got everything to gain, I got everything to lose, so I have to try to knock Rolly out,” said Davis. “I want to make him look bad – very bad. A lot of stuff we’ve been talking about, May 28th is the due date. You got to show. I'm the type of person that’s like ‘I want to bully the bully.’ I'm somebody that wants to prove to the next person that you're not who you say you are.
“Rolly's definitely somebody that he talks the talk but doesn't walk the walk. Like real killers don't really talk. They put work in. They actually grind and things like that. I'm coming with everything. And I want to stop him. I want to knock him out. Soon as I hit him on the canvas, I want to look directly into his eyes like, ‘I told you.’ I’ll probably say some more words, but I want to see him on the ground.”
Manouk Akopyan is a sports journalist, writer and broadcast reporter. He’s also a member of the Boxing Writers Association of America and MMA Journalists Association. He can be reached on Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and YouTube at @ManoukAkopyan, via email at manouk[dot]akopyan[at]gmail.com or on www.ManoukAkopyan.com.