NEW YORK (AP) — If it came to exchanging insults, Gervonta Davis might not be the better man this time around.
Rolando Romero can talk and did plenty before their game tonight, poking fun at everything from the quality of Davis’ resume to the size of his head.
When it comes to trading punches, Davis insists it will be a different story in a lighthearted and heated title match of undefeated Brooklyn.
“I feel like the discussion is over. The time has come,” Davis said.
He’s been doing this for a lot longer, not just at the top level of boxing, but in the sport itself. When it’s time to stop yapping and start yapping, he thinks there will be a big difference against a fighter who’s only had half the number of pro fights.
The fight features a Showtime pay-per-view card and the first major boxing event in Brooklyn since the pandemic began more than two years ago. Barclays Center is where Davis (26-0, 24 KOs) won his first title in 2017, and he continued to draw large crowds from coast to coast while winning titles in three categories of different weights.
At 27, he has established himself as one of boxing’s biggest names, although Romero (14-0, 12 KOs) claims he did it by beating smaller fighters or carefully beaten opponents. choose who do not have his power.
Romero boasted throughout the build-up to the fight that he would knock out Davis in one round. He didn’t back down when asked what he planned to happen. “Tank flat on the ground,” he said.
Davis seems alternately annoyed and amused by the antics of Romero, 26, who is on the verge of the biggest night of a boxing career that’s not even 10 years old. He only started the sport after quitting judo at age 17, giving Davis a significant advantage in the rounds.
“There are definitely different levels when you come to the sport of boxing,” Davis said.
“There are people who play boxing and there are people who have been doing this since they were kids. You have someone who has been doing this since they were seven years old and someone who has been doing this since that he’s 17. Like, come on, bro. It’s time to show that I’m one of them.
They were scheduled to fight in December before Romero was pulled from the card while authorities investigate the sexual assault charges against him. No charges have been filed.
Romero claims they were supposed to share the ring before then, but Davis twice backed out of his plans to spar with him.
He said Davis was afraid of him and believed he saw more fear against Isaac Cruz, the replacement opponent Davis fought in Los Angeles. Davis won that fight via unanimous decision, ending a streak of stoppages that began in 2015. Romero said Cruz easily knocked Davis out and thinks the Baltimore native will be target practice for his power punches. “There’s no way I could miss,” Romero said. “He’s got a big ass head.”
Both fighters are promoted by Mayweather Promotions, where Davis has long been the big star, considered a worthy successor to Floyd Mayweather. He’ll have to make room – or step aside – for Romero if the challenger fights as well as he talks.
Romero’s martial arts training has given him a reputation as an awkward fighter in the way he punches, but Davis sees only an underdeveloped one. Microphone proficiency helped Romero land a spot in the main event of a pay-per-view after just 14 fights, but experience isn’t necessary to hype a fight.
It makes a big difference when the words stop and the punches start. Once that’s done, Davis is confident that there will be nothing more to say to Romero.