Editor’s Pick: Why Keyshawn Davis may simply be the perfect prospect in America
Keyshawn Davis may simply be the perfect prospect within the US. He spoke to John Dennen forward of his professional debut
ERROL SPENCE was the star to emerge from the US males’s crew on the 2012 Olympic Games, Shakur Stevenson was America’s main man at Rio 2016 and Tokyo 2020 would have been the making of Keyshawn Davis. Except it didn’t occur.
Due to the coronavirus pandemic the 2020 Olympics have been rescheduled for July of this 12 months. The Americas qualification occasion remains to be to happen, now set for May. Davis although determined sufficient was sufficient. He may wait now not. He left Team USA.
“I had a whole year to think about it and I didn’t make my decision until 2021,” he tells Boxing News. “I hope that it happens, especially for my friends that’s waiting for it. But I think the Olympics was going to be watered down this year and that it wasn’t going to be good on my end to wait a whole other second year for the Olympics. It was a big risk and I just wasn’t willing to take that risk of waiting again.”
“Me sitting and waiting, that’s scary. I couldn’t do that for a whole other year,” he continued. “I really feel prefer it was going to be extra of a setback than a acquire.
“I did wish to go to the Olympics, the Olympics is a good expertise however in the end professional was all the time simply one thing I knew I could possibly be very, very, not solely profitable, however simply be inspirational at, have individuals actually interact into watching me combat, interval, whether or not it’s a knockout or only a nice efficiency. I couldn’t wait to go to the professionals and now it’s right here.
“So going into 2021 I feel like it was great timing to go. It’s like I’m a fresh breath of air coming into the professional game. A new fighter now. Now all the attention is on me. It was a great time to go.”
The man from Virginia is about to make his skilled debut on February 27, on Canelo Alvarez’s undercard in Miami. But he has been hampered by the snow storms and energy outages that struck Houston, the place he trains in Texas. His water had been minimize off when he spoke to Boxing News
His coaching was severely disrupted. But Keyshawn stated, “One thing this winter storm reminded me of is that regardless of your situation, someone else always has it worse. My team and I rode all over the city of Houston for two hours looking for food one day. On our journey, we saw dozens and dozens of homeless and displaced citizens out in the freezing cold, snow, and rain. It made me realise that while we are hungry and desperately searching for food, this is an everyday reality for some people. It reminded me that I had to be grateful for my situation and the fact that I had a roof over my head despite having no power, water, or food.”
There is nice purpose for mounting hype round Davis. The excellent member of the present US newbie crew, he gained silver medals on the Pan American Games and World championships, denied gold in each occasions by the good Cuban Andy Cruz, and Cruz may properly show to be not solely the perfect within the 63kgs division however one in all if not the perfect pound-for-pound within the Olympic sport.
“He was way more experienced. At first I was losing to him, I was taking those losses personally… I don’t like losing. But after a while I just started going back and watching tape and just understanding the sport of boxing period and I started taking those losses as learning sessions,” Keyshawn stated. “I just got better with each fight that we had. He’s a great fighter, he’s not easy to beat. He’s very experienced, he’s older than me, he’s got all the tools to beat me. I was just this kid going in there and competing with him and making great fights with him. I had to look at the bigger picture itself, not just the loss, but look at what I was doing and the type of fighter I was becoming and now February 27, you’re all going to see.”
Keyshawn Davis makes his professional debut on the Canelo Alvarez present in Miami. You can signal as much as watch on DAZN right here
“I feel like the decisions that he was getting was because they [the judges had] seen him plenty of times, I was this brand new kid showing my talent,” he famous. “I was really up against all odds.”
Davis will solely flip 22 on February 27. He was simply 19 years previous when he went on a exceptional run on the AIBA World championships in Russia. His match, 5 bouts in a number of days, may need resulted in a defeat to Cruz however alongside the way in which he beat Uzbekistan’s Elnur Abduraimov, an Asian champion, Sofiane Oumiha, an Olympic silver medallist and World champion, and Hovhannes Bachkov, a bullishly sturdy Armenian who’s a European Games and European championships gold medallist. That was an astonishing sequence of performances. “After the first performance I had, I started feeling great, I started getting into my rhythm, I started to know okay, I can compete with these guys, not only compete with these guys but I can dominate too,” Davis stated. “Every day I just had that in my head. I went out there and I performed great.”
“I beat three champions,” he mirrored. “Just by that I’m a champion. I knew I was a champion with the success I done in that tournament.”
In phrases of the extent of competitors, the World championships are simply as laborious, if not tougher than the Olympic Games. “The only difference between the World championships and the Olympics is the title that they have,” Davis stated. “The Olympics, it was no assure. I couldn’t preserve going off no assure. Because I already made a reputation for myself. People already know I can combat and I generally is a world champion. It was simply the Olympics [where] they needed to see me win a gold medal and we don’t even know if there’s going to be an Olympics.
“Right now I’m just looking to move forward.”
His ambitions are firmly centered on the skilled sport. “I’m ready, I’ve been ready and I just can’t wait to show the world how great of a fighter I really am. They know that I can fight but they don’t know how great I really am and I just want to show them,” Davis stated. “They’re going to see how good I actually am, they’re going to see the IQ, they’re going to see a big difference in me coming into the pros rather than all the other amateurs coming into the pros.”
Davis will turnover at light-weight however at his age he can finally transfer up via the divisions (he sees himself in the end going all the way in which as much as super-welterweight). “I want to be the top dog at 135lbs of course,” he says. “I want to be undisputed at 135, I want to let everybody know can’t nobody beat me.”
It shall be an thrilling division to be part of. “You’ve got Gervonta Davis, Teofimo Lopez, Ryan Garcia, Lomachenko, Devin Haney, you’ve got so many names at this 135 and [now him,] this kid that can be on the fast-track is in this weight class,” Keyshawn stated. “Being in this weight class I’m very confident, I’ve sparred a lot of them guys already.”
It was that elite sparring that ready for the perfect within the amateurs. “I’ve been in the ring with Terence Crawford, I’ve been in the ring with Shakur Stevenson, Teofimo, Gervonta Davis, I’ve been picking up so much IQ from these guys and then took it internationally,” he defined. “The best person technically I’ve been in the ring with was Shakur Stevenson but all around fighter I would say definitely Terence Crawford.”
He discovered from them. “I’m a person that’s like a sponge,” Davis defined. “I perceive what they’re doing to me, I perceive why I most likely obtained caught with that physique shot, why he retains throwing the jab and taming me. Because I was an actual aggressive fighter.
“Now sparring guys like that, they made me use my head. I started realising a lot of things, like okay I can’t just keep fighting off my ability. I can win like that but let’s take it to another level, let’s start using my head.”
They made him perceive the significance of management over your opponent in a contest. He’s satisfied that’s what helped him in opposition to the perfect the newbie sport needed to supply. “I already knew how to have control in the ring, which a lot of these prospects don’t understand to do yet, they don’t know how to do that yet,” he says. “I feel like I do that naturally now.”
Davis grew up in Norfolk, Virginia, the house of Pernell Whitaker, one Keyshawn’s personal heroes. “He was a Pan American champion, he was an Olympic champion, he was a world champion, not only that but he was a great fighter, he will go down as one of the greatest,” he stated, earlier than including, “I want to top that, if not be better than him!”
Norfolk, he explains, “It’s not really a great place to grow up in, I’m not going to lie to you. A lot of distractions, the environment wasn’t good. You got people doing things they’re not supposed to be doing at a young age, understand what I’m saying. But that was just like the typical we had to overcome. That’s like a typical story. Honestly that wasn’t really hard to overcome, especially as I’ve got two other brothers, Kelvin and Keon. We always stuck together. We was raised right, I would say, and we always had this mentality that we’re not going to let nothing stop us and as we stuck together we grew together.”
His older brother Kelvin is already a professional, his youthful brother Keon is a six foot two newbie light-weight. Keyshawn guarantees they are going to be ones to look at too. “I’m here today and I’m bringing them along with me,” he says. “I do this for my family. They’re the ones that drive me… They’re my strongest circle. They’ve been supporting me since I didn’t have no support and I can’t be nothing without them.”
The subsequent step for him, the brand new starting is February 27. “I left amateurs a loser. I was number two in the world,” Keyshawn stated. “That just speaks for itself. Now I’m coming into this pro game with a chip on my shoulder and to be number one. And to leave number one.”