The heaviest that Gervonta ‘Tank’ Davis has weighed for a pro fight was 135 ½ pounds, though in a situation where he was the much bigger man in the ring.
No such advantage will be enjoyed by the reigning WBA junior lightweight titlist in his upcoming challenge of unbeaten secondary WBA junior welterweight titlist Mario Barrios. The two-division jump for Baltimore’s Davis is uncharted territory in his career, with Barrios likely to weigh 140 pounds only long enough to make weight and for the unbeaten San Antonio native to come in much bigger on fight night.
“I won’t know,” Davis admitted to assembled media when asked about handling the heavier weight during an open workout at Mayweather Boxing Club in Las Vegas. “I won’t know until I’m in there with a full-blown 140.”
Baltimore’s Davis (24-0, 23KOs) has primarily fought at junior lightweight during his eight-plus year pro career, enjoying two title reigns at the weight while also claiming a secondary title at lightweight in a one-off move up in weight. That occasion came in December 2019, when Davis stopped Yuriorkis Gamboa in the 12th round of their Showtime headliner at State Farm Arena in Atlanta.
Davis will return to the same venue for literally the biggest challenge of his career, giving away more than four inches in height to the 5’10” Barrios, who has campaigned at junior welterweight since 2017. The 26-year-old was even pondering a move to welterweight earlier this year before landing the lucrative assignment versus Davis, who has made the necessary adjustments during training camp as he looks to test the junior welterweight waters.
“We’ve been sparring bigger guys and… I just want to say that I’m crackin’,” quipped Davis, who has stopped his last 15 opponents.
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox