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Gervonta Davis to headline July 27 Showtime card in Baltimore

The IBF super featherweight titleholder is indeed headed home for a defense.

Adrien Broner v Jessie Vargas Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images
Scott Christ is the managing editor of Bad Left Hook and has been covering boxing for SB Nation since 2006.

Yesterday, we took note of a Twitter exchange between IBF super featherweight titleholder Gervonta “Tank” Davis and Leonard Ellerbe, in which it appeared that Davis would be heading home to Baltimore for his next fight this summer.

ESPN confirms that today, reporting that Davis (21-0, 20 KO) will defend his belt in a Showtime main event on July 27 at Royal Farms Arena in Baltimore.

Royal Farms Arena has a capacity of about 14,000 and is currently home to the Arena Football League’s Baltimore Brigade.

The 24-year-old Davis is coming off of a first round knockout of late replacement opponent Hugo Ruiz on Feb. 9, which was also a Showtime main event. The original opponent for that fight was to be Abner Mares, who had to pull out due to needing surgery on his eye.

Davis doesn’t have an opponent yet for this next defense, but given it’s a “homecoming” fight, it would probably be wise to not expect a whole lot. The division’s other titleholders are all tied up — Miguel Berchelt rematches Francisco Vargas on May 11, Tevin Farmer has been ordered to face Guillaume Frenois, Masayuki Ito faces Jamel Herring on May 25, and Andrew Cancio will rematch Alberto Machado on June 21.

And other than the beltholders and their fights, the 130-pound division just isn’t that deep right now. Joseph Diaz Jr is fighting on the Canelo-Jacobs card on May 4, Scott Quigg is injured. The pickings are slim.

That said, ESPN mentions the same possibility we did yesterday: 37-year-old Yuriorkis Gamboa, who signed a deal with PBC earlier this year. Once one of boxing’s brightest up-and-coming stars, Gamboa (29-2, 17 KO) has seen his career nosedive since making the unfortunate decision to leave Top Rank for 50 Cent’s ill-fated boxing venture several years ago.

Gamboa lost to Terence Crawford in 2014 and Robinson Castellanos in 2017, and he looked completely done in that loss to Castellanos, dropped twice and quitting after seven rounds. He’s won three in a row, but the best of those — a majority decision over Jason Sosa in 2017 — was debatable at best. Gamboa gets knocked down a lot and “Tank” is a young, powerful guy who can blitz opponents.

Remember that scene in Dorne on “Game of Thrones” where the big dude with the axe or whatever it was — look, I know a lot about the show, but I’ve largely scratched Dorne scenes out of my head — got the advantage on the one-handed Jaime Lannister but didn’t kill him? That dude said, “It would have been a good fight when you were whole.” That’s kinda what I think about a potential Davis-Gamboa matchup.

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