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U.S. amateur boxer Keyshawn Davis decides to wait for 2021 Olympics, won’t turn pro yet

The amateur standout is staying amateur for now.

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2019 AIBA World Boxing Championships in Yekaterinburg, Russia Photo by Valery Sharifulin\TASS via Getty Images
Scott Christ is the managing editor of Bad Left Hook and has been covering boxing for SB Nation since 2006.

A few weeks ago, we talked about highly-touted U.S. amateur boxer Keyshawn Davis seemed to be leaning toward turning pro with the Tokyo 2020 Olympics postponed until 2021, but now the 21-year-old prospect says he’s going to stay in the amateur ranks and wait for the Games next year.

He plans to turn pro immediately after the Olympics.

“After I weighed my pros and cons I think waiting will actually be the better route for me,” Davis told Mike Coppinger of The Athletic, saying that he believes winning a gold medal will not only mean he improves as a boxer over the next year and change, but it would give him a bigger pad to leap off of heading into the pro game.

Davis, who is 21 and fights as a light welterweight, has been considered a top hope for a male American fighter to win gold in the Olympics for the first time since Andre Ward in 2004.

American men have only won three medals total at the last three Olympics: Deontay Wilder (bronze) in 2008, and Shakur Stevenson (silver) and Nico Hernandez (bronze) in 2016. The team went home empty-handed in 2012 despite boasting a talented group who have become standout pros, including current titleholders Errol Spence Jr, Jose Ramirez, Joseph Diaz Jr, and Jamel Herring, former titleholder Rau’shee Warren, and title challengers Dominic Breazeale and Michael Hunter.

The fact that there’s as much uncertainty around the pro game as there is the amateurs at this point likely played at least some part in Davis’ decision; there’s really not even a professional sport to go into right now, and the status of anything for the coming months is impossible to predict with any certainty.

So the Olympic dream goes on for Davis, and we’ll have to wait a year longer than expected to see him in a pro ring.

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