Leonard Ellerbe says Tank vs. Shakur or Haney not big fights

By Adam Baskin: Leonard Ellerbe of Mayweather Promotions basically ruled out Gervonta Davis fighting Shakur Stevenson, Devin Haney, or Frank Martin anytime soon, saying those aren’t big fights right now.

Ellerbe says that Tank (29-0, 27 KO KOs) will eventually get around to righting “all” of them, but he doesn’t say when.

In the meantime, the 28-year-old Tank Davis will likely continue fighting the level of opposition he’s been facing, which, apart from the popular social media/boxer hybrid Ryan Garcia, haven’t been big fights.

Ellerbe doesn’t give any clues about the opposition Gervona will be fighting when he returns to the ring in 2024, but it’s an open secret that it’s going to be a rematch with Isaac ‘Pitbull’ Cruz, a fighter Davis beat in 2021 by a close 12 round decision.

That’s NOT a big fight, but none of Tank’s fights in his career have been hugely successful, with the exception of the match with Ryan, and he’s the reason for that due to his 11 million Instagram followers.

Tank pulled a Floyd Mayweather move by picking a guy with a huge social media following and taking advantage of it to get PPV buys from them because the boxing public was no longer purchasing his exhibition matches in large numbers.

Tank announced earlier today that he won’t be fighting until early next year, saying, “I’m getting my personal  life together.” He just got out of jail in July for violating the terms of his home detention for his hit-and-run sentence.

The timing of Tank’s fights

“It never was a possibility. I don’t know where that kind of stuff comes from,” said Mayweather Promotions CEO Leonard Ellerbe to the media when asked if a fight between Gervonta Davis & Keith Thurman is a possibility.

“I tell people all the time. Tank is his own boss, and when he’s ready to go, he’s going to let you guys know. I’m going to let you guys know he put up a post today, and he said that ‘I’ll see you guys in the early part of next year.'”

Gervonta obviously isn’t the one who picks out his opponents. He goes with who they select for him. The choice of Ryan Garcia clearly didn’t come from Tank Davis. That was an opportunist move thought up by one of the management.

It worked, but only because of Ryan’s popularity. The guy can’t fight and would fall apart against most of the top 15 at lightweight, but he’s got a large social media following, which has nothing to do with what he’s done during his career.

“Tank is that dude, and none of them dudes is f***king with Tank,” said Ellerbe when asked if Devin Haney or Shakur Stevenson poses the biggest threat to Gervonta Davis.”

Tank  is a good fighter, but he would lose to all of these guys:

  • Shakur Stevenson
  • William Zepeda
  • Devin Haney
  • Vasily Lomachenko
  • Teofimo Lopez
  • Frank Martin
  • Edwin De Los Santos
  • Raymond Muratalla
  • Subriel Matias
  • Gary Antuanne Russell
  • Richardson Hitchins

“Me personally, I respect them all, but y’all going to see. The timing of these fights, and I can say this that most of these people don’t know nothing about the business of boxing; they really don’t,” said Ellerbe.

When Ellerbe talks about “timing,” he’s talking about marinating fights like Mayweather did, waiting six years before finally fighting Manny Pacquiao near the end of the Filpino fighter’s career after he’d beaten knocked out by Juan Manuel Marquez and beaten by Tim Bradley.

“The fight that they think are big. What is considered big? I don’t know. When you guys consider big, but Tank’s been making eight-figure money for a minute,” said Ellerbe.

“I don’t want to get into any of that,” said Ellerbe about who will make for the biggest money fight for Tank between Devin & Shakur. All these guys can fight; all these guys are good fighters.

“All of them can fight, but I’m just saying that Tank’s going to show you guys that he’s better than everybody. He’s going to show you guys. He ain’t going to talk about it. He’s going to show you guys that he’s better than all these guys and again and again.

“It’s like it’s different, and I can say this, it’s different because everybody, and I’m not talking about them two [Haney & Shakur], but you just hear it more so now in boxing. Everybody got all these sparring stories, but when you get on them lights, bring it on them lights.

“I’m just saying that this building to becoming a superstar is a process; it’s a process, man. I’m telling you, it’s a process you don’t all of a sudden just go. Tank is selling out everywhere, and you guys are saying that he ain’t did this,” said Ellerbe.

Gervonta will eventually fight the top guys

“Well, people are coming to see him for a reason, and you’re running a business,” Ellerbe said. “Both of those fighters [Shakur & Haney] who you guys are talking about.

“They got outstanding teams, smart people, managers, and they’re all smart. People talk about a fight happening right now. I wouldn’t want to insult somebody from the business side because because Tank’s got to pay you what you weigh.

“He’s got to pay you what you’re bringing to the table, and I’m talking about the business. I ain’t talking about belts and all that because Tank showed you that if you’re not fighting for a belt, that don’t matter.

“People want to see, and it’s like they going to come. These fights [Shakur, Frank Martin & Haney], I think they will happen in time and I’m not going to put a timeframe, this is just my opinion.

“I’m not speaking for nobody this is just my opinion. The experience that I have and the level I’ve been operating, I know what it takes.

“These fights that you guys think that are big at the moment, they’re not big, they’re not big because what you will see if you if you tell any of these guys [Haney, Shakur & Martin] to go out there do a pay-per-view fight on their own, then you’ll see what I’m talking about,” said Ellerbe, making it clear that Tank won’t fight Haney, Shakur or Martin anytime soon if ever.

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