Undefeated Mayweather Promotions talent, ‘Tank’ Gervonta Davis, challenges for the IBF super featherweight world title at the Barclays Centre in Brooklyn, New York City on January 14th. He takes on the 22-0 undefeated champion Jose Pedraza who makes the third defence of his title.
The Puerto Rican champion Jose ‘the sniper’ Pedraza wants to add his name to the pantheon of boxing greats from the island. He has good amateur pedigree having won a silver at the world championships in 2009 only a year after having represented his country at the 2008 Olympic games. At 27 years old he is in his prime and has the experience over his challenger.
Standing at over 5ft 8 inches tall Jose has the natural height and reach advantages in this fight but he possesses an unorthodox style for a tall fighter which mean less importance should be placed on these factors going into the fight. Pedraza has a good jab but his jab is not really a key weapon. In fact, he prefers to come forward and put the pressure on rather than to stick behind the long 70 inch jab and keep his distance. For a man of his height he tends crouch down and tuck up tight as he comes in before unleashing cracking his whip like combinations to the body. He is very adept at landing body punches.
Davis may only be 22 years old and relatively inexperienced but his accomplishments in the amateur ranks as a junior set him apart as a prodigious talent. He has two junior Olympic gold medals to his name. Hailing from Baltimore Maryland he now boxes under the stewardship of Floyd Mayweather Junior in Las Vegas.
He boasts an undefeated 16-0 record with 15 wins coming via way of knockout. It shows he is very heavy handed but there’s more to his game than a knockout punch. He is a southpaw with a fast snappy jab and he throws his straight left hand beautifully down the pipe. You can see some of the Mayweather influence come through in his style. One of his best shots apart from the straight left is his left uppercut. I wouldn’t be surprised if he has joy landing this shot in this fight.
I think Davis has the sharper jab and will use it to dictate the fight. I also think he has the power advantage. Having said that Pedraza still has the ability to cause damage to him. I think the key for Pedraza will be to sustain a high volume and set an intense pace hoping that he can accumulate the damage and fatigue in his opponent over the course of the rounds. He will not be shy to fight fire with fire. However his ability to do this will be tested as he will have to be able to stand up to the power from his opponent which has simply been too much for anyone else so far.