The weigh-in for Gervonta Davis vs. Mario Barrios is in the books. There were none of the weight struggles that happened during Davis’ last Atlanta weigh-in in 2019 against Yuriorkis Gamboa, where Davis was over three hours late and failed to make weight on his first attempt. While on target at 139.75 pounds, the 5’5 Davis was towered over by a shredded Barrios at 5’10 and 139.5 pounds.
PREDICTION: Fight hype aside, this fight has a some variables that make a definitive pick somewhat of a crapshoot. For one, Davis’s power is an unknown commodity at 140 pounds. Sure, only fight has gone the distance in his professional career, but he’s never stopped a top 135-pounder, let alone someone as big as Barrios. But on the champion’s end, Barrios has never faced an elite puncher with the speed Davis has. In Barrios’ most well-known fight, a bloody war with Batyr Akmedov, Barrios took numerous heavy shots but was able to earn a close unanimous decision due to knockdowns in the 4th and 12th. How will Barrios’ hold up against an an aggressive fighter who’ll likely hold the edge during the trench warfare, and hit him hard (and often)?
Then there’s the stamina question. The weight issues Davis had at 135 against Gamboa had him labored in the later rounds. However, that wasn’t present in his last bout, a sensational sixth-round stoppage of Leo Santa Cruz at 130 pounds. It’s true that Santa Cruz has an incredible workrate, but he’s a natural featherweight, which allowed Davis the ability to walk through Santa Cruz’s punches to set up the uppercut KO. Will a similar workrate coming from a larger fighter in Barrios wear on Davis’ offense?
While I’m certainly expecting a highly competitive bout, the smart money should be on Gervonta “Tank” Davis. He’s the more physically gifted fighter with faster hands, harder punching P4P, and more skilled inside to hold the advantage when the “fireworks” start as both men have promised. Since we’ve haven’t glimpsed Tank’s power at this weight but have seen Barrios’ ability to withstand heavy punishment, I’ll be conservative and pick Davis by an entertaining by clear unanimous decision.
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The weigh-in had an early party for those who attended, including the below performances from Erica Banks (of the “Buss It Challenge” viral fame) and “aerial” DJ Mami Chula.