Gervonta ‘Tank’ Davis faces Hugo Ruiz on February 9 on SHOWTIME

Image: Gervonta 'Tank' Davis faces Hugo Ruiz on February 9 on SHOWTIME

By Jeff Aranow: WBA Super World super featherweight champion Gervonta ‘Tank’ Davis (20-0, 19 KOs) will be fighting former WBC super bantamweight champion Hugo Ruiz (39-4, 33 KOs) as a replacement opponent till fill in for the injured Abner Mares on February 9 LIVE on SHOWTIME Championship Boxing at the Dignity Health Sports Park , Carson, California.

Mares, 33, suffered a right elbow injury and had to pull out of the fight.

Davis and Ruiz are big punchers, but the size, power, Speed and youth difference between them greatly favors Gervonta. Ruiz tried to slug with Hozumi Hasegawa and he got blown out by him in 2016. Davis is a much bigger puncher than Hasegawa, so this fight has early knockout written all over it.

Mares and Ruiz are both featherweights. As such, there’s no real upgrade for Davis. Mares would have been over-matched due his lack of size and power, and now Ruiz is in the same boat.

The 30-year-old Ruiz has past losses to Hozumi Hasegawa, Julio Ceja, Koki Kameda and Enrique Quevedo. Ruiz has won his last three fights since being stopped in the ninth round by Hozumi Hasegawa in September 2016. Since that loss, Ruiz has beaten Alberto Guevara, Jesus Galicia and Dennis Contreras. Ruiz won the World Boxing Council 122 lb title by a 1st round knockout win over Julio Ceja in February 2016. Unfortunately for ruiz, he lost his WBC title in his first defense in getting stopped in the 9th round by 37-year-old Hasegawa. Ruiz owns a lot of quick knockouts in his 13-year pro career. However, most of the stoppages have occurred at bantamweight.

Ruiz has fought only once at featherweight, and that was against Alberto Guevara, who he beat this month by a 10 round unanimous decision on January 19. Ruiz wasn’t able to stop Guevara, which suggests that his power didn’t carry up to the 126 lb division. Ruiz is now moving up to 130, and taking on one of the best fighters in the division in Gervonta, which isn’t good news for him because he’s going to need a great chin and a lot of power for him to have a chance of winning this fight. Ruiz did blank Guevara by a one-sided 10 round decision, but that’s not saying much. The 28-year-old Guevara isn’t a great fighter.

“I’m 100 percent ready to knockout Gervonta Davis,” Ruiz said.

Ruiz would be lucky if he could knockout some of the past opponents that Gervonta has stopped. It’s hard to imagine Ruiz being able to beat past Gervonta knockout victims like Jose Pedraza, Francesco Fonseca and Liam Walsh. You can’t expect much for Davis. This is a replacement opponent, so it’s not that big of a deal that he’s facing a guy that is beatable.

Davis needs better opponents than the guys he’s been facing. Both Ruiz and Mares are fighters that Davis shouldn’t be facing. He should be fighting top 130 lb guys like Alberto Machado, Tevin Farmer, Miguel Berchelt, Miguel ‘Mickey’ Roman, Ryan Garcia, Masayuki Ito, Evgeny Chuprakov or Francisco Vargas. The way that Davis is being matched, it’s likely that his career is going to continue to be like this the rest of the way.