Kell Brook: I’m the best welterweight on the planet
By Scott Gilfoid: With Floyd Mayweather Jr. now retired, IBF welterweight champion Kell Brook (35-0, 24 KOs) is mouthing off, saying that he thinks he’s the best fighter in the welterweight division. Heck, I don’t think Brook is even the best welterweight in the UK. Amir Khan probably beats him.
That’s kind of hard to believe given how poor Brook looked in his fight against Shawn Porter last year, a fight in which Brook was forced to clinch constantly to keep from getting battered by Porter. I had Brook losing that fight by four rounds.
Amir Khan also thought that Brook lost. Right now it’s impossible to consider Brook as the best fighter in the 147lb division because he’s faced such God awful opposition during his 11-year pro career. He’s only fought Porter, who he should have lost to last year. The rest of the guys that Brook has faced since he turned pro have been domestic and European level fodder.
Brook was supposed to be fighting tonight against #4 IBF contender Diego Chaves (23-2-1, 19 KOs) at the Sheffield Arena in Sheffield, UK. But a rib injury suffered during a recent sparring session has derailed the fight against the Argentinian temporarily. Brook, 29, doesn’t know when his injured rib will be healed up enough for him to fight again, but he should consider himself fortunate that the rib injury occurred during a sparring session rather than during the real thing. We still don’t know when the Brook-Chaves fight will be rescheduled. It’ll be up to Brook and his trainer to decide when they’re ready to take that fight. But it’s obviously going to be a positive for Chaves because it gives him more time to get ready for the fight and come up with the perfect strategy to beat Brook.
“There’s no welterweight out there who can beat me,” Brook said to skysports.com. “I was going to do [to Chaves] what no one else has done. I believe when I am at 100 per cent, there is no one who can touch me. I am the best welterweight on the planet.”
There are a lot of rumors circulating around that the real reason that Brook pulled out of the Diego Chaves fight wasn’t because of a rib injury that he sustained. It’s because Brook was too heavy and had no chance of burning down all the weight to get to the 147lb weight limit for the welterweight division.
It’s unclear whether this is true or not, but there’s no question that Brook is a very, very big fighter for the welterweight division. What makes it tougher for a guy like Brook to make weight is that he doesn’t have fat to take off. He’s pure muscle and looks to be the size of a big junior middleweight.
Why Brook chooses to fight lighter guys at welterweight instead of junior middleweight is anyone’s guess. My thoughts are that Brook does this in order to have a weight advantage over his opponents. Having an advantage in weight always helps because you can absorb the blows easier from your lighter opponents. But it’s got to be tough on Brook to lose weight to get down to 147.
“I believe when I am at 100 per cent, there is no one who can touch me,” Brook said. “Manny Pacquiao, [Danny] Garcia, [Keith] Thurman, [Shawn] Porter, [Timothy] Bradley – all of them are in my sights now. All the elite-level fighters with the massive names and who are great fighters themselves.”
Brook isn’t going to get those fights because he’s not a big enough name to get the bigger fights. Of course, if Brook’s promoter Eddie Hearn opened up his purse and pulled out $1 million+ to offer those guys the cash, I think they’d come running to face Brook. But if Hearn does that, then I don’t think the money would be as good for Brook as it normally is. That’s why I don’t see Brook ever getting any of the big money fights because as long as he wants to take a healthy cut of the cash, I don’t see any of the talented welterweights from America agreeing to fight him for chump change.
“No welterweight can touch me,” Brook said. “My weight is not a problem,” he said. “The fact is, every time I fight I make the weight. People say I am scared, or this is a weight problem, but I have been training for ever. My weight was bang on. I was on all the targets in the gym, so it is a genuine injury.
Brook says his injury is legit, so you have to believe what he’s saying. Unfortunately, a lot of boxing fans think that Brook doesn’t have an injury, and instead is dealing with weight problems. If it is weight problems, then Brook needs to think about moving up to the light middleweight division so that he doesn’t have to struggle to make the weight.
As far as Brook being the best fighter in the 147lb division, I don’t think that’s even close to reality. I think Brook can’t beat the top guys, which is why he did so much holding in his fight against Porter. If you take away all the holding that Brook did in the fight, he’d have been wiped out by Porter. As it is, I think Brook should have been penalized multiple times for all the ugly holding he did in that fight.
I’ll be surprised if Brook can beat Chaves without holding all night long like he did against Porter. I’m hoping that Brook doesn’t resort to holding when he gets inside the ring with Chaves, but I don’t think Brook can handle power shots very well. That’s why I see him having to hold in order to survive. I know it’s going to look really bad if Brook starts with the clinching bit when he gets inside the ring with Chaves, because it’s so awful to look at.
It could be that Brook’s only real big fight of his career will be against Amir Khan when that fight eventually happens. If Brook continues to choose to fight just in the UK, then I don’t see him ever getting the big fights that he wants against U.S fighters because they’re not going to go over to the UK and take the small money to fight Brook in front of his own fans. Yeah, Brook might eventually get a Brandon Rios type fighter, but he’s not going to get the big names.
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