Gervonta Davis planning early 2024 return to the ring, who might he face?


Gervonta Davis doesn’t sound like he’ll fight again in 2023, but also suggests it won’t be too far into 2024 that he’ll be back in the ring.

“I’m getting my personal life together,” he posted on social media. “I’ll see y’all top of the year.”

Davis, 28, had two fights in 2023, first beating Hector Luis Garcia by ninth round TKO on Jan. 7 in Washington, DC, near his home in Baltimore, and then following up with a KO-7 win in a massive fight against Ryan Garcia on Apr. 22 in Las Vegas.

But “Tank” also very notable had issues outside the ring that finally caught up in 2023, as he was sentenced on charges stemming from a 2021 hit-and-run case on May 5. At the time, he wasn’t to serve jail time, but that changed within a month, and he wound up spending the bulk of a 90-day sentence in jail by court order in early June.

Davis (29-0, 27 KO) has held the WBA’s secondary “world” title at lightweight since beating Yuriorkis Gamboa in Dec. 2019, and still has that belt. With Devin Haney moving up to 140 lbs to face Regis Prograis, it’s expected that in time, Haney will no longer be recognized as WBA “super world” champ at the weight, and Davis’ recognition would be the only one the sanctioning body has at 135.

As one of boxing’s biggest drawing cards and stars, Davis isn’t likely to be “ordered” to do anything he doesn’t actually want to do, but for kicks, the WBA’s current top five contenders at 135 are Isaac Cruz, William Zepeda, Frank Martin, Vasiliy Lomachenko, and Floyd Schofield.

You can count Golden Boy prospect Schofield out — it would be a hideous and reckless managerial decision for his side — and probably but not definitely Lomachenko, whose main mission now is big fights, and this would be the biggest he can do.

That would leave Cruz or Martin, who are with Premier Boxing Champions like Davis, and Golden Boy’s Zepeda. Cruz has wanted a Davis rematch for years at this point, but Martin seems the most likely bet, as he recently passed on an order to face Shakur Stevenson for the vacant WBC title, leading many to believe he has a deal to face Tank in the bag, basically.

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