(UPDATED 7/6/2014) With the dog days of summer upon us, I want to touch on and showcase some of the up and coming talent in Baltimore-D.C./Metro area boxing scene. With the blessings of the editor I have decided to start my “Boxing Spotlight Series” which will bring you established and up and coming boxers.
Today’s boxer is Baltimore’s Gervonta “Tank” Davis. Davis, 19, is an undefeated professional featherweight–(7-0, 7 knockouts) after having won 206 and losing10 fights as an amateur. Veteran trainer Calvin Ford is currently training Davis.
I recently had a chance to speak with Davis:
Wright: OK, first off, talk about growing up in Baltimore and some of the people that helped you grow as a boxer and as a young man.
Davis: I grew up in Baltimore where it’s hard. There’s a lot of shootings and drug dealing. Many people helped me out in boxing, such as my main coach, Calvin Ford, and some others at Upton Boxing Gym. Calvin is like a father to me. He took me in as a son when my dad was locked up and wasn’t around.
Wright: In addition to your trainer Calvin Ford, you are also among a long list of fighters who happen to be managed by Al Haymon. What made you want to sign with him and how did it come about?
Davis: My coach Calvin Ford raised me as a young boy to work my way up through the amateur ranks, and we always said that when it’s time to make that move to go pro, sign with Al Haymon. He treats his fighters right and they are well taken care of. How I got with Al was just meant to be, and now I’m glad I can work with the man I dreamed to work with.
Wright: With Haymon as your manager, you are still under the tutelage of your longtime trainer, Calvin Ford. Tell us a bit about him and your rise through the ranks together.
Davis: Calvin Ford is a great, all-around person. We’ve been through it all together, coming up in the amateurs. We are continuing everything into the pros. Words can’t explain what that man means to me. Calvin is my hero.
Wright: Tell me about your upcoming fight and a little background about your opponent (if any) and where boxing fans can pickup tickets?
Davis: I was told that I’ll likely fight in August, but we don’t have a specific date yet or an opponent. As soon as I have the info, I’ll let you know and I’ll post it on my social media.
Wright: How active will you be this year?
Davis: I cannot say how active I will be, but my goal is to fight often until I reach a record of 15-0 or 16-0.
Wright: Let’s take a look at the featherweight division for a second with guys like Nonito Donaire, Orlando Salido, Abner Mares and others. Is there anybody down the line (once you have a good amount of fights under your belt) that you would like to have a shot at?
Davis: I would like to take a shot at all of those guys. To be the best, you have to beat the best, but that’s up to my management team to say who I fight next.
Wright: I found out that you are also a student and that you returned to school this year to work towards your high school diploma. Talk about why you made that decision.
Davis: I went back to my high school because I knew I needed to. You do need education to do many things in life. I need to be able to read my contracts and understand what’s going on in the business side of boxing. People can get over on you if you don’t understand what’s going on.
Wright: On a personal note, what are five things about you that boxing fans would find interesting? I’ll take one off your list and let the fans know that your KO percentage is 100!
Davis: Not only that my KO percentage is 100, I’m a great role model to the youth. I’m good all around the board, I have speed, power, footwork and many more other things. I’m great in the ring and out.
Wright: Last, but not least, where can the fans go to interact or follow you on these various social media platforms?
Davis: My Instagram address is @GervontaDavis, Twitter is @GervontaDavis and Facebook Gervonta Davis. To all my fans and supporters, I love you all. Support me and I’ll fight for you.
Michael Wright is the co-host of FSP Crew Show, an online sport talk radio show, and an occasional contributing writer for the AFRO.