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Brandon Rios says he’s fighting Gamboa on April 14th

Brandon Rios Yuriorkis GamboaBy Dan Ambrose: Former WBA World lightweight champion Brandon Rios (29-0-1, 22 KO’s) said on his facebook page that he’s facing former IBF/WBA featherweight champion Yuriorkis Gamboas (21-0, 16 KO’s) next on April 14th at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada.

If this turns out to be true then we’ve got an excellent fight. Both guys are with Top Rank, so it’s an easy one for promoter Bob Arum to put together. I’m just kind of surprised because Gamboa has been fighting at featherweight and he hasn’t fought anyone as big as lightweight Rios yet.

It would make more sense for Gamboa to move up to lightweight in stages by first moving up to super featherweight and see how he does at that weight before moving up to lightweight. Going from featherweight to lightweight is going to be a big risk if this fight happens. More importantly, Rios has had problems making 135, and he balloons up in weight after he rehydrates. Gamboa will likely be fighting a junior middleweight sized Rios unless they have a weigh-in on the day of the fight. I like Gamboa’s skills but putting him in with a guy that comes in 20 pounds heavier than him will be asking a lot of Gamboa.

Rios failed to make weight in his last fight against John Murray last December resulting in Rios losing his World Boxing Association title on the scales. Although he still won the fight by an 11th round TKO, Rios didn’t look at all good in the fight and took a great deal of punishment against a limited UK fighter in Murray. Gamboa is a much better fighter than Murray, and Rios would have had some serious problems if that had been him in the ring instead of the slow as molasses Murray. Arum will be taking a big risk by putting Rios in with Gamboa, because if Rios loses this fight then you can forget about a Rios vs. Manny Pacquiao fight in 2013. That’s a fight that Arum wants to make.

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