At Last Gervonta Davis-Ryan Garcia Official For April 22nd
After months of haggling, we have final confirmation that one of the top non-heavyweight bouts in recent years is finally final and set for April. This, as both Gervonta Davis and Ryan Garcia confirmed Friday afternoon that their PPV mega-bout is happening, now for April 22nd in Las Vegas.
In addition to the fighters, Showtime Sports President Stephen Espinoza, whose network will produce Davis-Garcia, further relayed confirmation of the new date, pushed back one week from April 15th.
— Stephen Espinoza (@StephenEspinoza) February 24, 2023
Our Insider Dan Rafael Had More Friday Evening
From Dan’s substack post,
“…..three additional sources, all directly involved in the event, confirmed to Fight Freaks Unite and Big Fight Weekend that the necessary paperwork was signed on Friday.
It was the end of a months-long will they or won’t they drama, false announcements of the fight being set as far back as November, and issues every step of the way between rivals who rarely do business with each other — Davis’ team of Premier Boxing Champions, TGB Promotions and Showtime and Garcia’s team of Golden Boy Promotions and DAZN.
The 12-round nontitle bout at a contract weight of 136 pounds — one over the lightweight limit — will headline a Showtime PPV card at a venue to be announced in Las Vegas.
All along the date of the fight was slated to be April 15 but was moved to April 22, which was one of the late hurdles that had to be dealt with.
Both sides wanted a two-month promotional window but time was running short and Golden Boy and DAZN were in a financial dispute that was one of the reasons things dragged on, one of the sources said.
That took time to resolve and led to moving the date one week later to preserve an eight-week promotional window. But the new date could not be locked in immediately because Showtime had to first make some changes to its network schedule, something that figured to be ironed out and on Monday was termed by one source as “a hiccup” to finalizing the deal.”
The supremely talented Davis, now 28-0, 26 KOs, was last in the ring in January in Washington D.C. That’s when “Tank” stopped Hector Luis Garcia (no relation to Ryan) after eight rounds for a TKO headlining his latest Showtime PPV. However, there’s since been more urgency for the Davis-Ryan Garcia bout to finalize and happen prior to the beginning of May.
That’s because the 28-year-old Davis pleaded guilty to multiple charges last week in Baltimore, MD, stemming from his causing a hit and run accident that injured four others in the other vehicle. Davis and his lawyers told the court he had agreed with the prosecution to plead guilty to four of his 14 traffic offense charges. stemming from the accident in downtown Baltimore in November 2020.
Those charges he plead to are: leaving the scene of an accident involving bodily injury (a felony in Maryland), failing to notify a property damage, driving with a revoked license and running a red light.
It’s believed that the circuit court judge in his case will sentence Davis on May 5th to at least 9 months and maybe more, in the Baltimore County jail for the guilty plea to the felony hit and run. If that’s the case, that time frame would obviously nix any chance of Davis fighting for the rest of 2023.
As for the poplular Garcia, 23-0, 19 KOs, he was last in action in July in his second bout of 2022 for Golden Boy Boxing and after taking considerable time off for mental health issues and a hand injury. Garcia overwhelmed veteran Javier Fortuna by knocking him down three times, including for the final time less than 30 seconds into the six round for the win.
Dan Rafael further reported Friday evening that rematch clause language, Davis has the option for the rematch but Garcia does not, plus another legal issue delayed the final agreement being signed until now.
However, that’s been ironed out and the fighters are on track to meet. Further, it’s believed that the venue in Las Vegas for April 22nd could be announced, as early as next week.