Having taken to the ring in his home city of Baltimore Saturday last, 23-year-old Malik Hawkins defeated Jonathan Steele team mate Gervonta Davis’ undercard.
He won by unanimous decision over eight rounds to move to 16-0. Big things are expected of Hawkins.
With the card being shown on Showtime and taking place in his own city, Hawkins was pleased with the outcome of his fight.
“I would give my performance a B+,” Hawkins exclusively told World Boxing News. “I did a lot of smart moves in the fight.
“But I still need to tweak a few things because at the top level I cannot make any mistakes. Overall I’m pleased with the outcome.”
Hawkins turned pro in November 2014 with a first round stoppage of Terrence A Coles.
He won a NABA-USA Welterweight title in 2018 beating Raymond Serrano by unanimous decision. Hawkins believes he is progressing as a pro.
“I turned pro in late 2014 but I see major progression in my career. I’m taking my time not trying to rush anything and just staying patient,” said Hawkins.
“In the next 12 months I want to be in the top 15 or top 10. I should have a major regional title and getting ready to fight for one of the world titles.”
Having already competed at both super lightweight and welterweight, Hawkins believes that for the immediate time he will be sticking at 140 pounds.
“I will be competing at 140,” he explained. “I feel there’s just too many welterweights.
“I’d be trying to fight for a world title for the next five years before I actually do. So me and my team decided to move down a weight class which was no problem for me.
“I plan on moving back up to 140 in another year or two but until then I’m At 140.”
One welterweight who has had a renaissance again late in his career is Manny Pacquiao who beat Keith Thurman a few weeks ago. Hawkins was impressed by the Filipino star.
“I thought that Manny’s performance was great. It definitely showed that at the age of 40 he still has power and speed and hasn’t lost his touch.
“I would rank Pacquiao top three welterweights behind Errol (Spence) and Crawford,” Hawkins added.
Speaking of Errol Spence, Hawkins told us what he thought of Spence facing Shawn Porter.
“I think that fight is going to be a hell of a fight. I can honestly say this, if somebody don’t get knocked out then they both will come out with bumps and bruises because that’s going to be a war.”
The World Boxing Super Series reaches a climax in the super lightweight division when WBA champ Regis Prograis takes on IBF champ Josh Taylor. Although Hawkins hasn’t watched much of it, he will make sure he watches the final.
“Honestly, I can’t really say (how the tournament has progressed) because I just really started watching my generation of boxing, but I’m definitely going to be watching. The only one I know and like in the the World Boxing Super Series is Regis I can say that.” Hawkins said.
Hawkins has fought three times already this year and is looking for another two fights before the year ends.
“We are looking for something around September or October, we are going to try to sneak in two more fights before 2019 is over and done.”
Mick Kane is a Staff Writer to World Boxing News. Follow Mick on Twitter @MickKaneMMA