Connect with us

Boxing News And Betting Tips

Double Whammy: Davis v Garcia & Benavidez v Gvozdyk Predictions

Boxing superstars Gervonta Davis and David Benavidez return to the ring in a championship doubleheader at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on Saturday night (Sunday morning SA time), writes Quintin van Jaarsveld.


Boxing superstars Gervonta Davis and David Benavidez return to the ring in a championship doubleheader at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on Saturday night (Sunday morning SA time), writes Quintin van Jaarsveld.

Undefeated three-division champion Davis defends his WBA lightweight championship against unbeaten power puncher Frank Martin, while Benavidez is set to make his 175-pound debut against former light heavyweight champion Oleksandr Gvozdyk in a clash for the interim WBC light heavyweight title.

5 AM Sunday SA time

Gervonta Davis (1.16) v Frank Martin (5.25) (WBA Lightweight Championship)

Davis enters his title fight, scheduled for 12 rounds, with more than a chip on his shoulder.

The WBA lightweight champion of the world has had a whirlwind last 14 months since knocking out previously undefeated Ryan Garcia. The highs of that stunning victory, which in the eyes of many made “Tank” the new face of boxing, were followed by the lows of a 44-day prison stint for violating the terms of a home detention sentence for a November 2020 hit-and-run in which four people were injured.

Now set to resume his remarkable career, Davis is champing at the bit to put his name back in the lights. It’s not nearly as big a fight as his previous clash with fellow superstar Garcia, but it pits him against an unbeaten prospect who’s looking to shock the world.

There’s plenty of spice to the fight, from the pair having contrasting accounts of a previous sparring session to personal remarks being made. The beef will be squashed and the questions, about whether Davis will pick up where he left off and if Martin is at the elite level, will be answered in the fight capital of the world this weekend.

Davis is who I like to call “Mr Dynamite Comes In Small Packages”. The 5’5½” dynamo is a one-of-a-kind knockout artist who’s decimated everyone who’s stood across from him in the squared circle. The savage southpaw has claimed 27 of his 29 wins by knockout, giving him an unprecedented 93% KO ratio, and has won titles in three different weight classes. 

Martin, while also undefeated, is hoping to one day build a résumé like Davis’. He’s done a solid job up to this point and his record of 18-0 with 12 knockouts sounds impressive, but he’s yet to face the cream of the crop. To illustrate the difference in class, Davis’ elite-level opponents have a combined record of 483-126 (20% losing rate), while Martin’s opponents’ combined record is 161-92 (57% losing rate).

The last time we saw “The Ghost”, he rallied to beat Artem Harutyunyan by decision in a hard-fought content last July in which Martin’s conditioning came to the fore. While he has good power, speed is his greatest asset, though, Garcia is also known for his quickness and Davis had no problem landing heavy shots on him.

Davis is a methodical machine. His reflexes and accuracy are top-tier, making him a deadly counter-puncher, yet he’s just as lethal moving forward. With this being a battle of lefties, it’s worth noting that Davis is 15% more accurate against southpaws than he is against orthodox fighters.

Perennially the shorter man, he’s a master of closing gaps and setting traps, which he does with expert feints and level changes. The protégé of Floyd Mayweather picks his spots and gets better as the fight goes on and as he downloads data on his opponent. In that respect, it could take time for him to figure Martin out due to the angles the 29-year-old creates.

Martin’s best weapon is his jab. Most of his offence is this range-finding, point-scoring punch. He’s a mid-range fighter, thus he’s usually neither all the way in nor out, and because of his excellent endurance, most of his knockouts come in the later rounds.

All in all, Davis’ difference in class will show and he should find the finishing blow. Don’t be surprised if it’s a check hook.

Prediction: Davis by knockout.

Best Bet: Over 9.5 rounds at 1.80.

Alternative Bet: Davis by KO/TKO/DQ at 1.55.

4 AM Sunday SA time

David Benavidez (1.14) v Oleksandr Gvozdyk (5.50) (Interim WBC Light Heavyweight Championship)

Driven to do big things, current interim WBC super-middleweight champion Benavidez – who holds a flawless record of 28-0 with 24 knockouts – makes his long-discussed move up to light heavyweight where he’ll face Gvozdyk for the interim WBC belt.

“The Mexican Monster” had a career-best 2023 in which he followed up a star-making massacre of former IBF super middleweight king Caleb Plant in March by stopping previously unbeaten two-division world champion Demetrius Andrade in November.

The blockbuster back-to-back wins put him in prime position to square off against undisputed super middleweight champion Canelo Alvarez, however, with his dream fight not materialising, he’s pivoting to 175 pounds, where a win this weekend could put him in line to face undisputed light heavyweight king Dmitry Bivol down the line. 

Standing in his way in the 12-round co-headliner is Gvozdyk, an Olympic bronze medallist and former unified light heavyweight champion with a record of 20-1 with 16 knockouts. Part of the golden generation of Ukrainian boxers along with Vasiliy Lomachenko and Oleksandr Usyk, he retired after his only career loss – to Artur Beterbiev – in 2020 but re-emerged last February.

His three victories since returning have been against regional-level opposition, with the last two – against Ricards Bolotniks and Isaac Rodriguez – coming by knockout. Moving back up to the elite level, this fight will show whether, at 37, he’s truly still got it.

As a big super middleweight, the move to light heavyweight doesn’t see him give up any size to Gvozdyk, though, he’s used to being the bigger man. Given the fact that it’s Benavidez’s debut at 175 pounds and with Gvozdyk being a legitimate campaigner, “The Nail” is a live dog.

That said, Benavidez is a full decade younger than him and in his prime, so I see Benavidez being faster and sharper and getting it done.  

Prediction: Benavidez by knockout.

Best Bet: Benavidez by KO/TKO/DQ at 1.52.

Alternative Bet: Over 9.5 rounds at 2.00.

Quintin Van Jaarsveld is a former MDDA-Sanlam SA Local Sports Journalist of the Year and a former three-time Vodacom KwaZulu-Natal Sports Journalist of the Year. Formerly the sports editor and Outstanding Journalist of the Year award winner at The Fever Media Group, deputy editor at eHowzit, editor at and senior staff writer at, he boasts over 15 years’ experience and is currently a freelance sports writer.

More in Boxing News And Betting Tips