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Mayweather Abandoned? Is Tank Davis Set to Leave Mayweather Promotions?

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Superstar-in-the-making Gervonta “Tank” Davis dropped a bomb on social media on Thursday, revealing that his upcoming pay-per-view clash with Rolando “Rolly” Romero this May 28 will be the last under his contract with Mayweather Promotions.

“My contract up that’s why they want me to fight this clown so bad,” Davis said via his verified Twitter account, referring to his upcoming opponent, also a Mayweather Promotions fighter, while responding to a criticism about Mayweather Promotions keeping him “in house” to his detriment.

The implications of a free agent Davis are huge.

Ironically, the 27-year-old knockout puncher may have to follow the exact same path as Floyd Mayweather in order to achieve next-level stardom. And that path involves ditching his promoter in favor of full independence. Specifically, that means ditching Mayweather just as Mayweather ditched Bob Arum all those years ago to facilitate his own rise to superstardom and super riches.

There are a ton of big, legacy-defining fights to be had in the 130-140 lb. weight range and it seems as though Mayweather Promotions has been unwilling to pursue any of them. Instead, they’ve picked around the perimeter of acceptable fights, trying to build Davis’ profile with highlight reel knockouts instead of big, legacy-building challenges.

To some extent, the Mayweather Promotions plan has worked. “Tank” is a legit live gate draw, arguably second in North America to only Saul “Canelo” Alvarez. He’s also made his way to being an exclusive pay-per-view fighter, although sales figures have yet to reach the “star” level.

But that step up towards next-level stardom will require next-level opposition. Davis will have to fight and beat guys like George Kambosos, Vasiliy Lomachenko, Teofimo Lopez, Devin Haney, Ryan Garcia, Shakur Stevenson, Regis Prograis, and Josh Taylor– all in the 130-140 lb. category– to be seen as a true elite. Patience is running thin on the “everyone but” matchmaking strategy currently in place for Davis and it’s just a matter of time before fans just move on to somebody who WILL give them the fights they want to see.

In the past, the heavy-handed Baltimore native has hit back at criticisms over his level of opposition. In November, on Brian Custer’s Last Stand podcast, he publicly pointed a finger back at the other top lightweights, asserting aloud, “Name somebody that is fighting the top whoever. You don’t see any other top fighters fighting top guys…don’t just put everything on me and say I’m not fighting top guys.”

But the reality is that, yeah, fighting top guys is a key component to actually staying a top guy himself.

A free agent Gervonta Davis, if he plays his cards right, could hop from platform to platform and promoter to promoter, picking the biggest and best fights and accumulating power until he gets to the point where everyone has to come to him and work entirely under his terms and conditions.

Again, this is what Mayweather did and it absolutely would not have been possible if he hadn’t become a full free agent.

So, what WILL Davis do following this upcoming fight? On what terms are he and Mayweather right now? Is there any bad blood brewing there in a relationship that has not always been 100% happy and bright? Just how aggressive does Davis want to be in pursuing career self-determination and is he even wanting to undergo such a heavy task?

There are, obviously, lots of questions when it comes to Davis’ future. Right now, though, he’s set to face a brash and agitating “Rolly” Romero on May 28 who has legit one-punch power and the potential to change Tank’s course of destiny entirely.

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Paul Magno has over forty years of experience in and around the sport of boxing and has had his hand in everything, from officiating to training. As a writer, his work has appeared in several online publications, including Yahoo Sports, Fox Sports, FightHype, Max Boxing, Boxing.com, Inside Fights, The Boxing Tribune, The Queensberry Rules, and Premier Boxing Champions. You can reach him at: paulmagno@theboxingtribune.com