Davis Scores Easy TKO Win but Trump Tweet Steals Baltimore Show
On a weekend where Gervonta Davis and his connection to Baltimore were supposed to take center stage, politics overshadowed an easy stoppage win for “Tank.” Leading up to the fight, all the talk was about Davis’ upbringing in the city and his relationship with trainer Calvin Ford, who inspired the character “Cutty” on The Wire.
Davis did everything according to plan. He went out and overpowered little-known mandatory challenger Ricardo Nunez of Panama, landing a flurry of punches against a pinned Nunez in the second round that forced the referee to end the mismatch. It was an easy, hometown defense of Davis’ 130 pound WBA title that moved Tank’s record to 22-0 with 21 knockouts.
Any other weekend and Davis’ win would have been the talk of Baltimore. Unfortunately, this weekend President Trump got into a spat with Elijah Cummings, insulting his district in West Baltimore as crime-ridden, dirty and rat-infested. Suddenly, everyone on both social media and in traditional media got into a pro-Trump/anti-Trump online brawl centered around how nice of a city Baltimore is or isn’t, and Davis’ big win was hugely overshadowed.
That’s unfortunate, but Davis apparently has a big-name opponent in mind for his next bout that would get people talking about him again. While there are still rumors of Yuriorkis Gamboa vs. Davis following Gamboa’s big win over Rocky Martinez, Davis made it abundantly clear after the fight that he (and apparently his promoter, Floyd Mayweather Jr.) want the long awaited unification bout with longtime Twitter enemy/IBF champion Tevin Farmer next. That would be a big fight, but one that seemed just around the corner for ages, so who knows if it will actually happen this time?
Tevin Farmer Bores, But Won’t Get Himself Hurt Trying to “Entertain” Fans
The reason Gervonta Davis-Tevin Farmer is still being discussed is that Tevin Farmer also won his bout this weekend. But while Davis was entertaining his hometown fans with another thrilling stoppage, Farmer’s unanimous 116-111, 116-111, 119-108 decision win over Guillaume Frenois wasn’t so entertaining, and Farmer doesn’t care.
“The Athletics’” Mike Coppinger tweeted “Here in Arlington, Tevin Farmer is getting booed so loudly, can’t even hear his interview with Mannix after points win. I’m here with his promoter Lou DiBella, who said Tevin had a good performance, but that he’ll have a talk with his fighter about being more entertaining.”
In the wake of the death of Maxim Dadashev, Farmer didn’t want to hear that he should be more “entertaining.” In response to Coppinger’s tweet, Farmer said “More entertaining like take more risk. And more punches to the head. Just to be another fighter to suffer from brain injuries and possibly die just so I can be forgotten about a few months after. Nah. I dominated last night. Came home to my family unmarked and well. God bless.”
Without a dazzling personality, a defensive southpaw is always a tough sell, though Farmer did have some flashy moments that look good on highlight reels. It's tough to disagree with either DiBella or Farmers stances, but with Mayweather trying to make Davis-Farmer a big PPV event, maybe Farmer’s admission that he doesn’t care if his fights are exciting or not would have been best left unsaid.
Jose Ramirez Takes Maurice Hooker’s Belt in his Hometown Debut
While Baltimore fans had a reason to celebrate after Gervonta Davis’ win, Dallas fans that made the brief trip to Arlington Texas to watch Maurice Hooker left with a sour taste in their mouths. Former Olympian Jose Ramirez, who has made great strides training under Robert Garcia, after leaving Freddie Roach in 2018, took his WBC 140 pound title into Arlington and engaged in a tough back-and-forth battle, until the sixth round.
In the sixth round, even on one scorecard and slightly ahead on the other two, Ramirez hurt Hooker with a 1-2-3 (it’s okay to hook with a Hooker, apparently) that hurt Hooker, then teed off on him with such accuracy, precision and sheer suddenness of violence that the referee was forced to stop the fight. With the win, Ramirez became the WBO Champion, as well, and moved his professional record to 25-0 with 17 knockouts.
Again, the specter of Dadashev’s death loomed large. In case anyone wanted to question the stoppage, Hooker himself said it was a good decision, that he was hurt, and that “two fighters died this week, and I didn’t want to be the third.”
Ramirez was well aware that two fighters died this week, he is donating his shoes, trunks and gloves from the fight to the Maxim Dadashev fund. Those items will fetch at least $30,000 (there was already a bid of that amount) and Ramirez said he would match the highest offer himself.
What’s next for Ramirez? Well, there are only two other 140 pound fighters with belts, Regis Prograis and Josh Taylor, and after they fight each other next -- in the WBSS final, supposedly Oct. 5 -- Ramirez wants to fight for total unification of the weight class. He’ll probably need to make a mandatory title defense before then. Hopefully he’s smart enough to keep it away from his hometown.
Gamboa Stops Martinez with Second-Round Flurry
Yuriorkis Gamboa used to be known for his explosiveness, maybe he still should be. Against Rocky Martinez, the now 37-year-old former Olympic gold medalist out of Cuba dropped Puerto Rico’s Rocky Martinez twice in the second round, once with a left hook and once with a right hand against the ropes. The second knockdown ended the fight when Martinez didn’t beat the count (though, honestly he looked like he just didn’t want to continue).
Is Gamboa back and ready for Gervonta Davis, if Davis-Farmer doesn’t work out? Not so fast. Martinez, who was 36 years old himself, took three years off boxing after getting brutally KOed by Vasiliy Lomachenko. This was only his second fight after that break.
While Gamboa looked great, this was his first stoppage win since 2014. So, while Davis-Gamboa sounded good when Davis was fighting scrubs, if Gervonta Davis is talking -- seriously talking, not Gervonta Davis Twitter talking -- about fighting legitimate world champions, then Gamboa-Davis doesn’t need to happen.
Ref Botches Call on Push, Leads to Ladarius Miller Victory
This was the moment that Ladarius Miller beat Jezzrel Corrales, by pushing him onto the canvas. See, in a largely uneventful fight that would ultimately end in a split 93-96, 96-93, 95-94 Miller victory, Miller pushed Corrales onto the canvas, but on his way down Corrales grabbed onto Miller’s arm and (after an A+ ninja kip) was deducted a point for the move.
Had he not lost this point; math will tell you the fight would have resulted in a split draw, but if he hadn’t lost the point he likely would have fought a completely different fight. (People who say a team that loses by one point would have won if they’d taken the field goal in the first quarter are the reason we shouldn’t have time travel.) Still, it was a terrible call by the referee and an incredibly costly one for Jezreel Corrales.
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