Jessie Vargas says Kell Brook must fight him in U.S.
By Jeff Aranow: WBO welterweight champion Jessie Vargas (27-1, 10 KOs) says he’s interested in fighting IBF welterweight champion Kell Brook (36-0, 25 KOs) in a unification fight next, but Brook would need to agree to fight him in the United States because he doesn’t trust the judging in the UK.
If he had a preference, Vargas wants to fight a rematch against Tim Bradley so that he can avenge his loss from last June. However, Bradley won’t be available for the summer, which is when the 27-year-old Vargas plans on fighting next. He wants to fight in July or August. That time frame would work for Brook, but not for Bradley.
If Brook fights in the U.S, he won’t be able to take advantage of a large gate that he could attract if the fight were to be staged in the UK. Brook brings in large crowds when fighting at home. If he were to get a popular fighter like Bradley, Amir Khan or Danny Garcia, those fights would be big enough to stage in a large stadium.
A fight against Vargas would not be a stadium worthy fight. Brook fought in the United States in 2014, when he defeated Shawn Porter by a 12 round decision to win the IBF welterweight title. However, Brook didn’t have a choice but to fight in the U.S if he wanted to get a world title shot. But in the case of a fight against Vargas, it’s a fight that Brook doesn’t really need. He could ignore that fight and wait around for a bigger name to fight him in the UK. Traveling to his opponents’ home country should only be necessary for a big name. Vargas is not a big name.
“It would make for a great fight and it’s an opportunity for us to give the fans a great fight,” Vargas said to ESPN.com about a fight against Brook. “My only concern is the location of the fight. The fight would have to be in the U.S. He has fought in the U.S. before and it shouldn’t be a problem for him to accept a fight in the U.S. Who doesn’t want to fight in Las Vegas? He was treated fair the last fight that he fought here, and I feel that if I were to go fight him in the U.K. they wouldn’t treat me with the same respect and it will give him an edge,” said Vargas.
For Brook, this isn’t the big name that he’s been talking about wanting to bag for his summer stadium fight. Brook has said repeatedly that his promoter Eddie Hearn would be getting him a big name for his next fight. If all Hearn can get is Vargas, then that will be seen as a big disappointment to some of Brook’s fans.
If Brook wants to collect all the welterweight titles, then he can adjust least justify the move to fight Vargas as part of his plan to collect all the belts in the division. However, Brook and his promoter Hearn would need to go after WBA champion Keith Thurman to collect all the belts and that might be a tough fight for Brook.
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