Please click here to read Part One. Saturday, July 27 (continuing): Self-belief is definitely an underdog’s most powerful weapon and WBA junior lightweight obligatory challenger Ricardo “El Cientifico” Nunez experienced it by the bucket load. “I do not have any concern with Gervonta Davis,” Nunez informed The Ring’s Anson Wainwright through promoter Rogelio Espino previously this week. “I respect him but I’m doing the best training camp of my career because the fight is within his hometown and I really do not want the judges to have to work.
Perhaps that’s because nine of Nunez’s last 10 victories had come by knockout and his fifth circular stoppage of Yogli Herrera in July 2017 noticed him average an ungodly 123.6 punches per circular. The task rate of a fighter nicknamed “The Scientist Hardly,” would you agree? However as formidable as self-belief can be for a challenger, the pleasure a champ derives from defending his name in his hometown is even more so.
That joy was written all over Davis’ face as he soaked in the ear-splitting support of a sell-out masses of 14,686 followers inside the Royal Farms Arena. It is a picture about which all fighters wish but, if Davis’ expression was an signal, the truth much surpassed his imagined script. After the opening bell sounded, however, Davis proceeded to show his fulfilled dream into Nunez’s nightmare. Gervonta Davis (right) vs.
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Both demonstrated professional poise amid the highly-charged environment; Davis held his cool even after his connects drew substantial cheers as the challenger maintained his calm as he attempted to resolve the southpaw puzzle that was before him. Through the bout, the person called “Tank” prepared his work, worked his plan and eventually cashed in with the sensational finish off his audience expected him to deliver.
With 1:40 staying in round two, the fighters fell into a clinch. Nunez, expecting a break from close by referee Harvey Dock, relaxed his body and waited for the official to move in. “I noticed (Nunez) get hit with several big pictures and I made a decision to stop it,” Dock said in Joe Santoliquito’s fight report.
I thought Nunez was defenseless at that time – and he was. Tank punched him and he continued coming. Although the stoppage was viewed as early by some, I used to be perfectly fine with it – even without the backdrop of the fatalities of Maxim Dadashev and Hugo Santillan. In the secs before Dock’s move Nunez demonstrated definitive indications of duress – his hip and legs and chest muscles buckling and his head snapping from multiple perspectives. Therefore I interpreted Dock’s involvement as one made to prevent the further destruction that would have designed for excellent highlight reels but also may have negatively affected Nunez’s future.
Dock needed to walk a fine series – a series illustrated by the divided opinions regarding the timing of the stoppage – but that split meant there is at least some justification for this. If lightning-quick stoppages preceded with signals of duress are OK in mixed-martial arts – and they are – then I believe activities such as Dock’s should be suitable so long as the italicized caveat is also present.
Davis’ blowtorch finish off rendered the final CompuBox figures moot but those amounts were pretty competitive as Davis led 21-17 overall, 6-4 jabs and 15-13 power while also posting narrow accuracy gaps of 24%-22% overall, 12%-11% jabs and 39%-31% power. A telling stat: Davis got 45% of his power shots in round two (9 of 20) and he made an appearance in line to land even more.