• Photos from Esther Lin/SHOWTIME

Gervonta Davis vs. Leo Santa Cruz Final Press Conference

Three-time world champion Gervonta “Tank” Davis and four-division champion Leo “El Terremoto” Santa Cruz squared off at a final press conference Thursday for their highly anticipated fight taking place this Saturday, October 31 from Alamodome in San Antonio live on Showtime Pay per view.

Here is what the press conference participants had to say Thursday:


“My team and I decided to move our camp to Las Vegas so we could have a perfect camp. We spent 15 weeks in training, so I’m well prepared. Hopefully Leo is well prepared and we give the fans what they want to see.

“We know Leo is going to come with a lot of punches and I’m going to be explosive. It’s all about giving fans a treat. I’m grateful to be in this position and I’m ready. Saturday night is going to be a memorable night.

“Not to take anything from him, Yuriorkis Gamboa was just trying to survive against me. It’s harder to get punches off when someone isn’t trying to bring the fight. I know Leo is going to come to fight. I think this performance is going to put me up to the next level. 

“I don’t think I have to knock him out, I just have to go out there and be great. Forget everything else, I just have to go out there and show everyone that I’m the top guy in the boxing world. That’s my main goal.

“Michael Jordan used to read the paper and do what they said he couldn’t do. That’s what I’m doing. I have to prove that I’m the baddest man in the sport on Saturday night.

“Leo is going to come to fight and it’s just about me stepping up and doing what I do best. You can see the potential in a fighter from the outside, but you have to see it actually come out in a fight to believe it. That’s the position I’m in. Everyone knows I’m great, I just have to show it.

“Leo has shown that he’s a top tier fighter, and he’s going up against an explosive, powerful fighter like myself. I think the winner should be in the top 10 of the pound-for-pound list.

“Floyd Mayweather has just told me to stay focused despite everything that comes with pay-per-view week. I have to get the job done first, but also do everything that comes with being the next pay-per-view star.

“I’m one of those fighters that knows how to focus when I have something big in front of me. None of the great fighters before me have frozen up when it’s crunch time. I’ve always been able to focus when big things are on the line. That’s what I did for this training camp.

“I’m not really focused on anyone who isn’t Leo Santa Cruz. I can’t overlook Leo. As far as any other fighter out there, they just don’t matter to me right now. I’ll prove it along the way. This is one step closer to proving the point I want to prove.”


“This is what I’ve always dreamed of. When I was a little boy, I wanted to be on this stage. I’m living that dream and I’m very happy and excited. I never thought I’d accomplish it. I thought it was like winning the lottery. But thanks to the fans, I’m here where I’m at.

“I’m facing the best fighter in the division. If you want to be the best, you have to beat the best. I have to go against the best fighter. I wanted to challenge myself. I know this is a dangerous fight for me, but I want to test myself.

“We’ve both suffered and been through a lot to get here. Neither of us wants to go back to where we started. So I know we’re both going to give a great fight to the fans.

“I have the heart of a Mexican warrior. My dad has told me to fight a smart fight, but even though he’s going to say that, there’s a good chance I end up brawling with him at times. No matter what, we’re going to find a way to beat him.

“I don’t really worry about being the underdog. Everyone has their opinion. It’s my job to go out there and prove the doubters wrong. I trained hard to go out there and do that Saturday.

“Gervonta is the best opponent I’ve faced. He’s the strongest fighter I’ll have faced. The Abner Mares and Carl Frampton fights were great experience for this kind of fight. I learned a lot from those four fights and since then I’ve learned a lot more.

“It would mean the world to me to become a five-division champion. It would be another dream come true. I would put the Santa Cruz last name right up there with the best.

“Gervonta is a big guy and I know he’s going to come hit hard. But I’ve trained with bigger guys all camp and I’ve been able to take everything thrown at me.

“The fans want you to go and make it a back and forth war. I know against Gervonta I have to fight smart. I’m going to just try as hard as I can to listen to my father’s advice.

“I definitely took this fight to quiet the critics. People said I didn’t want to fight the big names. So I went after the biggest challenge in the division and that’s Gervonta Davis.

“I leave the opinions to the fans and media. My job is to get the win and give the fans a great fight. I’m going to give it my best and leave it all in the ring.”

CALVIN FORD, Davis’ Trainer

“Camp has been great. It was unbelievable. I really appreciate the work that he put in. I can’t wait to see Tank in the ring. I’m looking forward to great performances from both fighters.

“’Tank’ accomplished a lot of things that I’ve asked him to do, but this is the pinnacle of them all right here. Both of these families have walked the same line with different trails. They both have a chance to become greats with this win.

“Every time I look at ‘Tank’ now, I flash back to those younger years in the gym with him as a child. Now he’s the man I’ve always looked at him to be. He’s a family man, business man and a wonderful fighter. It’s amazing to see one of my boys all grown up.”

JOSÉ SANTA CRUZ, Santa Cruz’s Father and Trainer

“We had a really good training camp and understand the importance of this fight. Leo is fully prepared for this fight on Saturday and I expect him to have a great performance.

“I’m very thankful to be here. I’m so happy to be here with my son for such a big fight and be able to guide him and help him accomplish his dream.

“We know that Davis is a very strong and accomplished fighter. But Leo has just used it to motivate him in the gym every day and you’ll be able to see that on Saturday.”

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