It’s difficult not to be enthused by the peaking performance of unbeaten lightweight champion Gervonta “Tank” Davis, and in the span of one show, ProBox TV’s Paulie Malignaggi became fully devoted.

Starting Monday’s episode of “Deep Waters” by lamenting Davis’ 15-month absence before returning to produce a thunderous eighth-round knockout of Frank Martin Saturday in Las Vegas, Malignaggi called Davis (30-0, 28 KOs) a “tease” for fighting too infrequently and meeting lacking opposition.

“He gives us a fight against Ryan Garcia (in April 2023) and it’s like, ‘What am I watching here?’ I want to see the fights versus the big names,” Ma;ignaggi said. “We know (Davis) is one of the most amazing fighters in the sport. Dude, we want to be entertained by you. Give me the show … .”

Malignaggi praised Davis for delivering his knockout of Martin “so perfectly.

“He hits you with these speed-power shots, and he realizes your hurt even before you realize it.”

That’s exactly what transpired at the end of the Martin bout, as Martin crashed down from a massive David left hand, and Davis had already sprinted to a neutral-corner ropes to celebrate a knockout victory.

“He looks the best he’s ever looked, and he’s already been looking good,” Malignaggi said.

Still, the former welterweight champion stopped short of a full embrace by saying Davis was too late in getting to a showdown with return lightweight champion Vasiliy Lomachenko, 36.

Lomachenko promoter Bob Arum told BoxingScene Monday that representatives of each fighter – Davis is handled by Premier Boxing Champions – could meet as soon as this week in Las Vegas to discuss a unification bout that could occur by December.

“(Davis) has strategically called it out now because it’s more advantageous – to him, Lomachenko’s a little bit older,” Malignaggi said. “It’s a false sense of Lomachenko is still Lomachenko when he’s probably not. The win will maybe let (fans) think he is. Gervonta Davis knows that and it’s also a unification. All those chips line up. It’s a smart business move.”

But then, with fellow analysts Timothy Bradley Jr. and Chris Algieri, providing detail, Malignaggi had an epiphany.

Lomachenko has been fighting a long slate of opponents naturally bigger than him: Teofimo Lopez, Devin Haney, George Kambosos Jr.

Davis is a truer lightweight. He’s a former super-featherweight champion who weighed in at 133.4 pounds Friday – comfortably below the 135-pound weight limit.

Malignaggi had to admit he was now “excited” that the showdown might happen.

“It’s a little older Lomachenko, but the name still carries weight,” Malignaggi said. “It’s the scenario that boxing gives you, the natural transition of things: The young lion taking out the old lion. An older Lomachenko is better than Frank Martin.”

Algieri reminded, “He’s still Lomachenko. It’s the best fight that can happen in this weight class, with the highest-name guys.”

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