Saturday’s big boxing day kicks off with my pick for best fight of the night when Floyd Mayweather protege Gervonta Davis (17-0; 16 KO) takes on Liam Walsh (21-0; 14 KO). This 130 pound fight is the first defense of Davis’s IBF Super Featherweight title. Davis is ranked #6 in the division by Ring Magazine, with Walsh unranked. The fight will air on Showtime this Saturday, May 20 with a fight time of 6:00 p.m. ET for the full card. As the fight takes place in London, expect the Showtime broadcast to be on a slight tape delay.
How do these two stack up?
Davis: 22 years old | 5’6” | 69" reach | soutpaw stance
Walsh: 31 years old | 5’7" | ?? reach | southpaw stance
What have these two done recently?
Davis: W - Jose Pedraza (TKO) | W - Marco Antonio Macias (KO) | W - Guillermo Avila (TKO)
Walsh: W - Andrey Klimov (UD) | W - Troy James (TKO) | W - Isaias Santos Sampaio (KO)
How did these two get here?
Gervonta Davis is only 22 years old, but is already a world champion making waves in the division. Davis is a part of Floyd Mayweather’s team, and has really been taken under the wing of the former champion. He’s got a perfect record and a great KO ratio - not always against the toughest competition but there are some decent names on there. That record earned him a title shot earlier this year and he made the most of it, taking out Jose Pedraza in the 7th round. Davis is a fast starter who has never been in deep waters. His lone decision win came in a 6 round fight, and he’s only gone past round 6 twice with his longest fight ending in round 9.
Liam Walsh is a British boxer who, like Davis, sports a perfect record. While his record may not be filled with huge names, he’s consistently been in there with good opponents, testing himself against solid names in every fight of his for the past 7 years. He comes in off a win over the talented Russian fighter Andrey Klimov in October. Walsh is the kind of good all-around fighter boxing needs sometimes - not spectacular, but respectable.
What can fans expect?
For the Davis hype train to continue, he should be able to deal with a fighter of Walsh’s caliber. Walsh knows what he’s doing in there, so is not going to get blown out of the water by any means. I expect he will try to make this a scrap and rough up the less experienced Davis, where Davis tries to play a more Mayweather style cat-and-mouse game using his speed to his advantage. That said, Davis is more a young Mayweather with his offense, and will go for the KO instead of sit back and let the rounds add up. I see this being close in the early stages, with Walsh making a good show of it, before Davis slowly but steadily pulls ahead. Look for a late stoppage, but don’t be surprised if it goes to the judges. If it does, Davis better have his fingers crossed - he’s very much in enemy territory here, and a terrible decision is a real possibility.
Prediction: Davis, KO R9
Who should watch?
This is one all should tune in for. Davis is a fighter on the rise who deserves to be seen, and stylistically, I see these two matching up well. Add in what is guaranteed to be a raucous UK crowd and you have a good fight.