Undefeated boxing champion Gervonta “Tank” Davis is set to face-off against Mexican up-and-coming heavy-hitter Isaac “Pitbull” Cruz in an all-out lightweight slugfest inside of the Staples Center in Los Angeles Sunday (Dec. 5) night.
Davis, a southpaw from Baltimore, Maryland who currently is in possession of the World Boxing Association super lightweight belt and the World Boxing Association lightweight belt, heads into the matchup having won 25-consecutive bouts — knocking out 24 of his 25 opponents. While many will tune into the pay-per-view fight on Showtime to see if Davis can keep his knockout streak intact, others will be watching to see who walks the champ to the ring.
Davis has enlisted Lil Uzi Vert, Casanova and Lil Baby for previous matches, but it remains to be seen who the 27-year-old bruiser will call on Sunday (Dec. 5). Ahead of his fight with Cruz, Davis told REVOLT via Zoom he likes ring walks that put him in “the mode to put on a great performance.” “I don’t like ring walks that slow me down,” he said. “I like to be in that turnt mode going into the fight.”
Calling on two of the biggest rappers in hip hop to strut by his side is almost as easy as landing a jab for Tank. In October 2020, Tank walked to the ring wearing a big sombrero and a robe with Mexican flag colors to taunt his Mexican opponent Leo Santa Cruz. Uzi was by his side rapping one of Davis’ favorite songs of his “Bean (Kobe).”
“I probably hit Uzi 3-4 a.m. the night before the fight,” Davis recalled. “He jumped on the plane and he walked me out. That was major. That was the first time I ever did that. Uzi is my boy, and I appreciate him for that.”
“It’s the same relationship with [Lil] Baby,” Davis continued. “Whenever I need him. Anytime I fight, Baby always hits me up. We always communicate back-and-forth about if we doing the walk out… I appreciate both of them for always being on standby for whenever I need ‘em.”
Hip hop’s entangled relationship with the sport of boxing started long before Tank ever stepped into a ring. Mike Tyson walking out to Public Enemy’s “Fight the Power” in the 90s may have started the trend, according to Todd Snyder, the author of the new book Beatboxing: How Hip-Hop Changed the Fight Game. Other memorable examples include Zab Judah appearing in rap music videos, Roy Jones Jr. choosing Method Man and Redman to walk him out at the height of his career in the early 2000s, French Montana and Kodak Black accompanying Adrien Broner for his ring walk, Lil Kim walking alongside Deontay Wilder and Tank’s mentor Floyd Mayweather Jr. has routinely walked out with Lil Wayne and 50 Cent, among others.
Davis can’t pinpoint exactly why rappers choose to bring their favorite rappers with them to the ring. “Whatever gets them in their boxing mode. People listen to different artists for different reasons,” Davis explained to REVOLT. “Whatever rapper that fits their style, that’s who they choose to walk them out.”
Hip hop’s current favorite boxer wouldn’t reveal any details about what he has planned for his ring walk before he fights Cruz. “It’s a big surprise,” he said. “I’m gonna have Rihanna or Beyoncé walk me out,” he joked. “I just gotta pay them that million dollars.”