American puncher Gervonta Davis continues to prove he’s one of the most exciting fighters in sport

Gervonta Davis smacks Mario Barrios en route to another knockout finish.
Gervonta Davis smacks Mario Barrios. Ryan Hafey / Premier Boxing Champions
  • Gervonta Davis scored the 24th knockout of his career Saturday in Atlanta.
  • The Floyd Mayweather protege floored Mario Barrios three times in an unfamiliar weight class.
  • Watch the fight’s highlights here, as Davis continues to establish himself as a face of combat sport.
  • Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.

American puncher Gervonta Davis continues to prove he’s one of the most exciting fighters in combat sport.

Davis, the jewel in the Mayweather Promotions crown, won in style Saturday in front of an electric crowd of 16,570 fans at the State Farm Arena in Atlanta, and beat Mario Barrios to the floor multiple times to win in the 11th round.

It could have been a tall task for Davis as the 26-year-old competed in the 59kg division in his last bout – a brutal knockout win over Leo Santa Cruz in 2020 – but moved two weight classes higher to fight Barrios.

Relinquishing five inches in height to his opponent, Davis targeted the body of his 1.52m-11 opponent, and even dropped him with a left uppercut to the midsection.

It was a systematic and thrilling performance from a fighter who has fast become one of the faces of boxing, alongside the sport’s No.1 athlete Saul “Canelo” Alvarez from Mexico, and Britain’s world heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua.

Davis bloodied Barrios seemingly at will, knocked him down three times, but each time Barrios valiantly struggled back to his feet to continue the match.

The referee had seen enough in the 11th and waved the bout off, awarding Davis yet another stoppage win in his ever-growing pound-for-pound caliber career.

By the end of the fight, Davis and Barrios had landed a similar amount of punches according to Compubox data sent to Insider.

Davis landed 96 of 296 thrown for a 32.4% accuracy, compared to Barrios who landed 93 from 394 thrown for a 23.6% accuracy.

As well as being more efficient with his output, Davis also had the greater power and increased his activity in the second third and final third of the fight, landing 82 of 182 power punches (45.1%) compared to Barrios who connected with 65 of 223 (29.1%).

Perhaps part of that desire to up the ante with every round was due to his mentor Floyd Mayweather, who bellowed instruction to head-hunt during the eighth round. Moments later, Davis had another of his three knockdowns.

Watch highlights of the beatdown right here:

To Showtime pay-per-view broadcaster Jim Gray, Davis said after the fight: “I knew for sure if I catch him, I’m crackin’. So I caught him, and it showed.

“My coach was telling me to go to a jab style but I’m a southpaw so they know I’m going to that jab side. So I would try and bait him in. I faked like I was going left, and I threw my right. And my hook over top, and that’s where I caught him.”

He continued: “I knew he was hurt. I just had to catch him at the right time. Floyd came to me and was honest and said I was down … so he said ‘show me that you’re great.’ And you know how we do it in the doghouse, baby!”

Victory advanced Davis’ career to 25 wins with 24 knockouts, he remains undefeated and annexed Barrios’ secondary world title at 64kg to add to other titles he’s won at super featherweight and lightweight.

Impressed by what he saw, Mayweather said: “[Davis] has the potential to be one of the greatest ever.”