Gervonta Davis vs. Hugo Ruiz
Fight Week Media Workouts
Photos: Dave Mandel - SHOWTIME
Featherweight World Champion Gervonta Davis and former world
champion Hugo Ruiz were on-hand at Churchill Boxing Club in
Santa Monica Wednesday as they near their showdown that
headlines SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXINGģ Saturday, February 9
from Dignity Health Sports Park, formerly StubHub Center, in
Wednesdayís workout also featured fighters who will enter
the ring live on SHOWTIME in televised undercard
attractions. Undefeated super lightweight Mario Barrios will
be facing Mexicoís Richard Zamora, while former world
champion Javier Fortuna steps in against lightweight
contender Sharif Bogere in the opening bout of the
tripleheader beginning at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT.
Here is what the fighters had to say Wednesday in Santa
Monica as they prepare for their Saturday night attractions:
ďI was just watching Hugo Ruiz as I came in here. All I know
is that he is fast, he has some speed. It looked like he has
some power and good timing. I actually think that this is
not a walk in the park, like people think. The fact that
this is a late change doesnít concern me because once I get
in there, Iíll be able to make adjustments. Iím ready.
ďItís great to make it to this level. To have people under
me like ĎTruckí [Lorenzo Simpson], it feels amazing to
inspire them to go further in life. It makes me want to push
harder so that I can become the best that I can be.
ďI come from a city with a lot of violence and things like
that, but my mind was always focused on what I wanted to be
in life. I traveled when I was super young, so my mindset
was never like a typical eight-year-old. I won my first
nationals when I was 10 years old. Iíve seen the world and
Iíve seen the bigger picture. At that time, coming up in the
gym, there were guys that I was looking up to that were
getting killed in the streets. There were days in the gym
where we would get a call that guys we trained with had been
killed. I knew that itís either boxing or things wouldnít
turn out too good. I knew I had to stay in the gym and stay
ďCamp is going great. I feel ready for Saturday night. Iím
disappointed that Iím not facing Abner Mares but it doesnít
change too much. I heard that he hurt his elbow at first, I
didnít know that it was his eye. Once I heard it was his
eye, I took it more seriously.
ďI wanted to fight Abner. We could probably have done it
back home but I gave him the chance to fight in LA. I am the
champion, so Iím willing to give him another shot.Ē
ďI feel great. I just came off of training for my last fight
but I just feel like Iím continuing that training. I think
itís going to serve as great preparation for this next
fight. Itís only going to be a benefit for me.
ďI think this is going to be an explosive fight. Weíre both
known for our knockouts and this is a fight that can end at
any moment. Itís going to be by a knockout.
ďOut of my 39 wins, 33 of them are knockouts so I can say
with confidence that I can knock out Gervonta Davis. No
fighter is invincible and thatís a really possible outcome
ďGervonta Davis is a great fighter. Iíve watched him fight
and I know that heís a very strong fighter with a lot in his
arsenal. Thereís a reason why heís a world champion right
now but we know what weíre looking for. We have the hunger
and the ambition to be triumphant. We have everything we
need to beat Gervonta.
ďI took the fight on short notice and I just fought, but I
am ready. I trained very hard for my last fight and I still
feel more than ready to go. Iím very excited to have this
world championship opportunity and I am going to take
advantage of it and show the world what I can do.
ďI had a fight in November where I was training for a lefty.
I then had another fight in January where I was preparing
for a lefty. They changed my opponent last minute but I was
still ready to go. Iíve been preparing for a lefty for five
months and I think thatís a huge advantage for me.
ďThe reason I have so many knockouts is because I like to
surprise my opponents and I really think I have something
that I can surprise Gervonta with. Come Saturday, we will
see how many ways I can surprise him.
ďGervonta is a fighter just like I am. We both are going in
there with all the will to win and come Saturday I think we
are going to give the people the show that they really want
to see. I am ready to put on a spectacular show.Ē
ďI feel great. Iíve been training out in the Bay Area with
Virgil Hunter since the beginning of December. I was getting
great work, sparring with Devin Haney. We got about two or
three weeks of great work just going at it. That was
tremendous experience just keeping up with him. Heís a very
explosive fighter and ahead of the curve for his age. I
finished off camp sparring with Amir Khan, who is getting
ready for his Terrence Crawford fight. So overall, camp was
ďThis is going to be one of my toughest fights but I put in
all the hard work in camp and Iím going into Saturday night
with no doubts. If I get him hurt, Iím going to look to
finish him off but the knockout is not something Iíll be
looking for right away in the fight.
ďIím thinking about the weather a little bit, but at the end
of the day Iím a fighter and Iím going to overcome anything
I have to in the ring. Whether itís raining, whether itís
cold, once the bell rings it doesnít matter what the weather
ďI always try to go into my fights being as smart as
possible. I always want to box as much as I can but at the
end of the day, Iím Mexican so if I get caught with a good
punch Iím going to want to sit there and bang. Iím
definitely expecting some fireworks. Itís going to be an
action-packed fight and I guarantee you one of us is going
to go down. Iíve worked my ass off to make sure Iím not
going to be the one on the canvas.
ďSparring top guys like Devin Haney and Amir Khan has been
great and a huge advantage for me. People would pay top
dollar to see that, but all of us were just there
appreciating the work because we all need it. That was world
class work. You really canít beat it.
ďTexas has always been a hotbed for boxing, especially in
the cities of San Antonio, Dallas and Houston. Now, we have
a lot of upcoming fighters that are really showing out. Itís
only a matter of time before Texas becomes one of the main
capitals for boxing.
ďIn the next 18 months, Iíll hopefully get a shot at a world
title. I want to face any one of the champions right now. I
feel Iím ready. Iíve worked my ass off to get to this point
and I feel itís only a matter of time before we get that
title shot. Right now, my sight is set on the junior
welterweight division and weíre going to try to take over
the division as much as I can. But at the same time, Iím
6í1Ē and itís only a matter of time before I outgrow the
division but as long as Iím here and I can make the weight
healthy and I feel strong, weíre going to continue to
ďThis is my first time in Los Angeles and Iím really excited
to fight in a place like LA. This is a really well-known
place to fight that Iíve known about my whole life and Iím
ready to put on a showcase that people will recognize. I
want people to see me as a great fighter from here on out.
ďIíve been very focused this entire training camp. My
opponent changed late but my objective has not changed
whatsoever. Whoever I face on Saturday, Iím ready to fight.
ďIím only 25 years old. Some would say I got a late start
because I only started training and boxing when I was 15 or
16 years old but itís always been in my blood. My
grandfather was a boxer and I always knew the sport was
going to be my calling at the end of the day.
ďWe look forward to showing off this weekend. Iím ready to
show the people of the United States who I am. I want to
stand out and showcase what Iím all about. Iíve shown what I
can do in Mexico and now I want everybody in the U.S. to
show who I am in America now. To be surrounded by so many
talented fighters here, this is the type of fighter I want
to be. I want to be recognized the same way the other top
fighters around here are.
ďI think that Barriosí height is something that I need to
think about but Iím not worried about it. Iíve learned how
to fight against different styles and Iíve fought many
different fighters so I am ready for whatever comes my way.
I just want to put on a great show so the fans will only
have good things to say about me.Ē
ďI feel good. We are in weight and in great shape. On
Saturday, I will be the best fighter I can be. My new
trainer and I are in top shape. We had a really good
training camp. This fight is important for me. On Saturday
my career at 135 will be defined.
ďI have been working very hard in the gym. I have a great
strategy and the fans will see on Saturday night what Iím
all about. Bogere is aggressive, he comes forward and is a
very good boxer but Iím not concerned. I move forward and
Iím aggressive too. I can take him.
ďHopefully, that chicken Gervonta Davis will go up to 135.
If not, Iím willing to come down to 130 to fight him. I want
his belt. I respect his promoters, they know how to take
care of him and I have no problem with that but Iím just
hoping that heís willing to fight me. He has shown a lack of
respect as a human being. He hasnít done what a champion
should do and heís fighting guys he shouldnít be fighting.
ďWhat do I think of Gervontaís new opponent? Everybody has
social media and can see what the fans are saying about it.
ďMy fight against [Robert] Easter is hard to swallow. It was
one of those fights where you go in there, you work hard,
you show you are the better fighter but the judges donít
reward you for it. I know I was the better fighter. I won
that fight. A lot of people saw it the same way but
sometimes the judges go for the business side of things. I
was hoping for a rematch but nobody ever gave me the
ďI want to fight the best fighters out there. I donít care
who they are. If they have a title, Iíll fight them. If they
are good, Iíll fight them as well.Ē
ďJavier Fortuna is a veteran. We have similar experience.
Heís been there for a long time but so have I. I think weíre
going to put a on a good show for the people. He makes
mistakes and Iím going to capitalize on those.
ďThis is a dream for me. Iíve been doing this for over 20
years since I was a little kid. I have a passion for this
sport and a lot of people to make proud. Those people keep
me going through all of the tough times, the injuries, the
setbacks, Iím just so thankful that I have another day and
another blessing. Iím so thankful for this opportunity.
ďIím happy to have an opponent finally step up to the plate.
I feel people have been avoiding me but he stepped up and I
think weíre going to put on a great show. We both have an
exciting style and Iím looking forward to Saturday. In his
fight against Robert Easter Jr., I think he did his best to
win the fight but he came up short.
ďAs my trainer always tells me, keep knocking on the door.
One day, theyíre going to open the door. Saturday, they will
open the door. After Saturday night, the world is going to
see the ĎThe Lioní back in the top ten in the world.Ē
LEONARD ELLERBE, CEO of Mayweather Promotions
ďThis is a guy [Ruiz] that just fought on the Broner card.
Heís in great shape, heís a great fighter and heís coming to
put on a performance on Saturday night. ĎTankí is in great
shape but heís got to be cognizant of a guy that he hasnít
prepared for. Weíve seen what has happened in other fights,
specifically the [Jermall] Charlo fight. [Matvey] Korobov
came in as a last-minute replacement and it was a tough
fight. Certainly tougher than he had anticipated but thatís
part of the sport. ĎTankí has to be ready for anything.
ďGervonta has a tough opponent in front of him Saturday
night. Any time you are preparing for a specific guy, itís
going to take a minute to get used to your new opponent. It
will be interesting. ĎTankí will have to figure it out but I
think he will be able to go to work and figure it out.
ďIím always confident in ĎTankí. Heís one of the top
fighters out there in the sport. Heís the biggest puncher in
the entire sport and heíll eventually be the biggest star in
the sport. This is the start of a very big career for all of
his U.S. fans and the international fans as well. Heís ready
to take over the entire sport and Saturday night is just the
ďAnytime you lose a great fighter like Abner Mares from your
card, obviously there is always a little bit of a shakeup.
My prayers go out to him and his family and we wish him a
speedy recovery. Abner is a great champion, a great human
being and a guy that I have a tremendous amount of respect
for. He will be able to hopefully bounce back.Ē