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Malignaggi talks Ryan Garcia vs. Gervonta Davis

Gervonta Davis Ryan Garcia

By Aragon Garcia: Paulie Malignaggi says he used to believe that Gervonta ‘Tank’ Davis was too good for Ryan Garcia but based on their recent performances, he now sees the fight as an even contest. Garcia is on his way up and improving his boxing skills with each fight, whereas Tank seems to have leveled off.


Tank isn’t showing the same ability that he once did, and he doesn’t appear to be dedicated as Ryan is at becoming the best. Ryan is getting the most out of his talent, and unfortunately, Davis seems looks he’s starting to deteriorate.

Gervonta could eat his way out of the 135-lb division

The way that Davis is blowing up in between fights could be the single most recent why he might not ever fight Ryan. Tank Davis already ate his way out of the 130-lb division, and he’s already having problems making 135.


That tells you that Tank isn’t long for the lightweight division. In fact, it won’t be surprising if Davis is forced to fight at 140 by 2021. Unless Garcia follows Tank up to 140, those two won’t fight.

Malignaggi questions whether Tank Davis (23-0, 22 KOs) has plateaued as a fighter due to him looking lazy in his last fight against injured Yuriorkis Gamboa.

What makes Malignaggi now believe Garcia (20-0, 17 KOs) has a shot at beating Davis is the way he performed in his last several fights against Francisco Fonseca, Romero Duno, and Jose Lopez.


Ryan knocked them all out early and looked dangerous and powerful in smashing them.

Gervonta Davis Ryan Garcia

Gervonta Davis vs. Ryan Garcia an even fight

“I don’t know,” said Malignaggi when asked by Fighthype who wins Ryan Garcia vs. Gervonta Davis fight. “Before I would have thought Ryan wasn’t good enough or he was maturing and still developing. But now based on Gervonta’s recent form and Ryan’s recent form, it’s a great fight.

“Now I want to see it. Before, I wouldn’t have wanted to see it because I thought Gervonta was too advanced. I don’t know if Gervonta has plateaued or Ryan excelling, but I think it’s a great time to make that fight. It probably won’t get made because politically there are too many things in the way, but I’d love to see Gervonta and Ryan Garcia.

“I’d love to see Teofimo [Lopez] and Lomachenko. That fight is probably going to happen,” said Malignaggi.

Davis vs. Garcia would have been a good fight a couple of years ago, but probably not at this point. Davis has gotten heavy, and his conditioning is no longer there. Yeah, Davis is still winning but that’s because he’s not fighting the best.

Tank hasn’t plateaued as far as his youth and his innate power, but it’s pretty obvious that he’s not living the life of a world-class fighter. The way that Tank is letting his weight get out of control in between fights, it’s obvious that he’s not watching what he’s eating, and not putting in the work in the gym to stay in shape.

Gervonta Davis Ryan Garcia

Ryan Garcia has marketed himself well

“In talking about Ryan Garcia, a lot of people forget that Golden Boy also has another world champion around that weight class. Jo Jo Diaz is a world champion at 130 lbs,” said Malignaggi,

“A lot of people bypass him and talk about Ryan Garcia. Ryan has done a phenomenal job of marketing himself and bringing his boxing skills to a world-class level. I also think Jo Jo Diaz has worked very hard to get to the level of where he’s at.

“Based on him winning a world title, he deserves to be included in these conversations. I’d love to see a combination of those fights. But from a political standpoint, we’re probably not going to get them, so we’ll probably end up with Gervonta against Santa Cruz,” said Malignaggi.

It’s not just marketing himself that has made Ryan so popular. He’s producing knockouts that the boxing public wants to see, and he’s beating guys better than other fighters.

Joseph ‘Jo Jo’ Diaz is looking really good lately in coming back from his loss to Gary Russell Jr. Jo Jo recently defeated Tevin Farmer and looked sensational doing so.

Malignaggi discusses ‘confidence of youth’ fights

“It’s the confidence of youth too, and that’s why you want to make these great fights why guys are young,” said Malignaggi. “When their older, they’re still good, but they’re kind of fighting in a safer way, you know? The confidence of youth makes you throw caution to the wind and be willing to jump into the fire to go get that championship and be the man to reign supreme.

“Although Lomachenko is older than all of them, I still think he has that in him. At the same time, I see these other guys that are all young and still have that willingness to jump in there and take on all comers. That’s why I’d like to see these fights happening why they’re still young.

“Ray Leonard and Hearn didn’t fight right away, but they did fight in their prime. That’s why that fight was so special. You didn’t let it marinate until they were older, and they’re just happy to make their money. You end up with a phenomenal super fight,” said Malignaggi.

There are a lot of great young fighters like Teofimo Lopez, who want to fight the best but he’s not being given the chance. Top Rank wants to make that fight finally, but their hands are tied due to the coronavirus.

Crawford and Spence will wait too long to fight

“You’re probably going to do that with Crawford and Spence too,” said Malignaggi. “By the time they fight, forget about the crowd not carrying as much, the fighters themselves aren’t going to care as much. Leonard and Hearns, when they fought, they cared about the fight because they were at the point in their career where they were making their names.

“By the time Mayweather-Pacquiao fight happened, I wouldn’t say either didn’t want to win the fight because obviously their legacy means a lot, but I also think there would have been a lot of fire in that fight if it had happened a lot sooner. More enthusiasm for both guys.

“You’re fighting more cerebral when you get older, and you’re thinking more about the damage you take as you get older. When you’re younger, you’re fighting with all your skills, but you’re also fighting with less cautiousness. You want to take a bite out of each other so to speak,” said Malignaggi.

There’s a good chance that boxing fans won’t get a chance to see Errol Spence Jr. and Terence Crawford fight each other until both of them are on the downsides of their careers. The way that Spence is now slurring his words after his car crash last October is troubling.


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