Following speculation and hype, Gervonta David and Ryan Garcia have signed on the dotted line for an April 22 superfight in Las Vegas at a catchweight limit of 136lbs.
The fight, which has been under negotiations since November 2022, was awaiting a broadcast agreement between Showtime and DAZN. And per ESPN, it’s now completed. Showtime has long been Gervonta Davis’ and promoter PBC’s network of choice, and they sent the contract to DAZN. DAZN, the ever-growing streaming service which has elevated to new heights in professional boxing over the past decade, is the home of Ryan Garcia, who fights under the Golden Boy Promotions banner – led by ex-champion, Oscar De La Hoya.
The upcoming bout between Davis and Garcia has the potential to be one of the largest commercial boxing events of the year. Contractual complications nearly caused the bout to fizzle out, as Davis’ contract proposed a rematch clause for the Baltimore native, however, not for Garcia. The issue has since been resolved as the PBC agreed that Golden Boy Promotions would be the lead promoter should Garcia win.
If Davis loses, he’ll have 30 days to execute his rematch clause. However, suppose we pay attention to the early released betting odds. In that case, Davis owns the higher probability of success as hometown supporters will likely head to the bookmakers and attempt to cash in. Furthermore, multiple sports betting operators offer free bets in Maryland, which should spark a bigger interest for Baltimore bettors looking to profit from the knockout artist.
It’s no surprise Davis is the betting favorite. Behind a 28-0 pro record, the fighting pride of Maryland has stopped 26 of his opponents via KO or TKO. In the upcoming showpiece against Garcia, he’ll own the more significant chunk of the revenue.
Davis is one of the biggest attractions in boxing today, and fans were relieved to watch him defeat Hector Luis last month, as the ninth-round TKO kept the Garcia bout intact. Both fighters confirmed they wanted to fight on social media last November, but with a prolonged time to arrange the fight, Davis had accepted the ‘tune-up’ meeting with Luis.
Before his Hector Luis Garcia KO success, Davis had collected wins over Isaac Cruz and Rolly Romero at 135lbs.
Behind 4.2 million Instagram followers, Davis is undoubtedly one of the biggest celebrities in professional boxing and regularly fights in front of countless A-list celebrities. He’s currently ranked No.3 in the ESPN lightweight rankings and notably won gold when defeating Jose Pedraza by knockout in 2017 to collect the junior lightweight strap.
Garcia, who boasts a 23-0 record with 19 KOs, is a star in his own right. He’s bested ‘Tank’ with Instagram numbers, sitting with more than 9 million followers. He’s known for his lightning-fast punching speed, and the 24-year-old delivered his best career win to date in January 2021 when fighting back from a knockdown to defeat Luke Campbell.
Garcia was absent during 2021, and after he withdrew from a highly anticipated clash with Javier Fortuna, he cited mental health issues that saw a meeting with Joseph Diaz Jr. fall to the wayside.
The Southern California representative returned to the ring in 2022 with consecutive wins over Emmanuel Tagoe and Javier Fortuna. Most recently, Garcia impressed when scoring a sixth-round TKO over Fortuna, as he showcased his skillset by scoring three knockouts before the fight came to an end.
These bouts were at 140 lbs, and although he vowed to remain at the higher weight class, he’ll drop the four pounds to clash with Davis.
Like Davis, Garcia was scheduled for a tune-up bout in January. Still, he surrendered the opportunity to meet with Mercito Gesta to put all his focus on the highly anticipated showdown in April.
Davis was spotted at Super Bowl LVII rolling around in a wheelchair as he nurses an injured ankle. Hopefully, this injury doesn’t worsen, but sources have suggested he’ll be healthy in time for the Garcia bout on April 22. It’s unclear what caused the injury, but with only two months to recover and complete a full training camp, we can only hope that further complications don’t arise.