Ryan Garcia’s wish after his knockout victory: “I’m going to fight Tank Davis”

Even though Ryan Garcia looked better than ever with a sixth-round knockout of Javier Fortuna on Saturday in Los Angeles, it feels like we’re walking away from a super fight against Gervonta Davis.

The impressive performance — knockdowns in rounds 4, 5 and 6 — was Garcia’s second straight fight at 140 pounds after campaigning at 135, where Davis still resides. “Tank” Davis once competed at junior welterweight, a TKO of Mario Barrios in June 2021, but the weight disparity looks like another key on the shelves of any effort to secure a Garcia-Davis deal. “I’m never going back down to 135, I’m going to stay at 140, I’m going to fight ‘Tank’ Davis if he wants to at 140,” the 23-year-old Garcia said. “And if he doesn’t, then I’m going to fight 140-pounders. But he’s going to want to do it…there’s going to be riots if he doesn’t want to do it.

“I know I’m committed to it and I’ve told everyone that’s where my heart is positioned and I’m not going to waver for anyone.”

It’s clear Garcia really wants to meet Davis in the ring, but it’s less certain Davis feels about fighting a bigger man at a higher weight – Garcia is 5ft 10in, Davis is 5ft 5in inches and a half.

Davis tweeted afterwards that he was ready for the fight.

Weight is just one of many obstacles in the highly anticipated fight. Garcia has said repeatedly this week that he will not allow boxing politics – he is promoted by Oscar De La Hoya’s Golden Boy Promotions while Davis is with Premier Boxing Champions (PBC) – to prevent the conclusion of a ‘a deal.

It’s easier said than done.

So those are two obstacles to the potential super fight and the biggest obstacle of all: competing networks.

Garcia wrestles exclusively on DAZN, while “Tank” competes on Showtime. That same issue delayed a potential middleweight title fight between Jermall Charlo and Jaime Munguia. Charlo is with PBC/Showtime, while Munguia is with Golden Boy/DAZN. The inability to agree on which network would televise this fight killed the deal.

And the same sticking point can stall a fight between Davis and Garcia. Another hurdle is sure to be the purse split, though it’s clear who the A side is. .com Arena in Los Angeles when he edged out Isaac Cruz in December.

Garcia, meanwhile, drew 11,288 fans to that same Los Angeles venue on Saturday. But if the parties can somehow compromise on the various issues, Davis-Garcia is shaping up to be a can’t-miss action fight between two of the sport’s youngest stars.

Two explosive punchers with lightning-fast hands and a huge following is the kind of fight boxing desperately needs. Win or lose, the kind of jolt of an event of this magnitude would make Garcia a much bigger star than ever. He would be well positioned for many meaningful fights in a suddenly hot junior welterweight division.

140-pound executive Josh Taylor could meet Jack Catterall in a rematch this fall, but has vacated two of the four titles. There’s also Jose Ramirez and Jose Zepeda, who are lined up for another title rematch. Teofimo Lopez makes his 140-pound debut against Pedro Campa on August 13, and there are plenty of other top-notch fighters campaigning in the division. Regis Prograis and Subriel Matias are both looking for big fights. Undisputed lightweight champion Devin Haney has indicated he will be jumping up to 140 pounds sooner rather than later (likely after a rematch with George Kambosos Jr. this fall). If Garcia can’t land Davis before the end of the year, those are some of the names he could consider, but that would be a consolation prize at this point. After all that name-calling and name-calling, “Tank” Davis is the only opponent that matters to Garcia. And now that Garcia is active again, with two fights in four months, as well as a decisive victory over Fortuna, the time has come for Garcia and Davis to finally meet in one of the greatest fights in all of boxing. “It’s going to earn me the respect I deserve,” Garcia said. “And I’m never scared. I’ve got the competitive spirit in me, and you’ll see it when I fight Tank and kick his ass.”

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