Kell Brook interested in Errol Spence fight
By Scott Gilfoid: Kell Brook says he could move back down to 147 to defend his IBF welterweight title against his new #1 IBF mandatory challenger Errol Spence Jr. (21-0, 18 KOs) after his title challenge against unbeaten IBF/IBO/WBA/WBC middleweight champion Gennady “GGG” Golovkin (35-0, 32 KOs) in their fight next month on September 10.
Brook says he’ll move back down to 147 for a huge fight, and he considers the Spence fight as a huge one. As such, Brook will do what he has to do for him to get the big money fight against a big name. Brook would be really up against it in facing a talent like Spence after coming off of a fight against Golovkin.
We don’t know how Brook will be after absorbing a likely beating from Golovkin in their fight on September 10. Will Brook still be cogent after that fight? I don’t know, but I think it’s probably not the smartest thing for him to go immediately into fighting Spence in his very next fight. When you factor in all that weight that Brook will need to strip off just to get down to 147, I think he’ll be at a decided disadvantage against Spence.
I don’t care if Brook choses to go back to the same playbook that he used for the Shawn Porter fight by clinching Spence over 10 times per round to stall out each round to keep him from throwing punches, I still see Brook taking a royal beating. Spence is able to throw punches when being held. He’s not just going to let Brook used the ‘punch and grab’ technique all night long to keep him from being able to throw his own punches. Brook would actually have to fight Spence and beat him in a normal boxing match for him to have a chance of beating him, because the MMA nonstop clinching stuff that he used against Porter wouldn’t likely work against Spence.
Obviously, Brook would jump at the chance of fighting someone like Amir Khan in his fight after the Golovkin match, but that’s not likely to happen. But there’s always a chance that some of the other welterweight champions Danny Garcia or Keith Thurman may decide to fight Brook after the GGG fight. However, they’re managed by the same manager as Spence, so it’s doubtful that they’ll look to cut in line to get a fight against Brook.
With Brook bellyaching about having a hard time making the 147lb weight limit for the welterweight division, it’s widely believed that he won’t even try to melt back down to that division to defend his IBF strap against the talented Spence. Brook’s recent weight of 176 pounds at the World Boxing Council mandated 30-day weigh-in for the Golovkin fight suggests to some that Brook is either not serious about wanting to go back down to welterweight or just ignorant of how monumental it will be for him to trim down to make 147 again.
“Errol Spence would be a big fight and he’s tipped to do great things,” said Brook to ESPN.com.
“There would be big interest in me fighting him in the US and he’s my mandatory so that’s a fight that could happen. If people want to see that fight, I will do it.”
Yeah, of course boxing fans are going to want to see Brook fight Spence. It’s a fight that would create huge interest both in the States and in the UK. However, from Brook’s perspective, I don’t know if it’s the smartest move he could take. He probably would need to trim down 10 pounds from 176 to 166 at least to have a fighting chance of making 147. Brook could then dehydrate the 19 or 20 pounds to go from 166 to get down to 147.
Brook would then rehydrate overnight and come into the fight against Spence with a weight advantage of around seven or eight pounds. Spence said last week that he typically rehydrates to 159lbs for his fights at welterweight.
Brook would have a weight advantage, but not a big one and he would likely be weaker from having taken off 10 pounds to get to 166 to dehydrate around 20 pounds. That’s a heck of a lot of weight for Brook to lose to get down to 147. I know that Spence has to lose around 12 pounds to get down from 159 to 147, but dropping roughly 20 pounds is going to be hard for Brook to do to make 147. Can he do it? Yeah, I think Brook can lose the weight, because he’s been doing it for 12 years now in fighting at welterweight, so he’s probably got it down to a science at this point. I just think this is the wrong opponent for Brook to be losing a lot of weight to fight.
“I think I will defend my title again but it all depends on what is the biggest fight out there for me,” said Brook. “I’m not going back just to fight anyone; I want to fight people the fans are excited about. I want to be in huge fights. I’ve become world champion and now I get excited by fighting the best out there, so I will only go the weight where the big fights are,” said Brook.
There are no “huge fights” for Brook right now other than Golovkin and Spence. If Brook does come back down off the back of a likely vicious knockout loss to Golovkin, he can forget about fighting Manny Pacquiao, Thurman, Khan or Danny Garcia. Those guys aren’t going to fight him. Pacquiao would be an option if his promoter Bob Arum wasn’t so focused on matching him against his own Top Rank fighters over and over again now that he’s at the last stages of his boxing career. Arum is probably only going to match Pacquiao against his own Top Rank fighters so that he can try and make them more popular and valuable to him in their future fights. That means no fight for Brook. Jessie Vargas would be open to fighting Brook, but he’ll likely get whipped by Pacquiao on November 5 in their fight on HBO pay-per-view. If Brook is okay with fighting Vargas with him coming off of a one-sided loss to Pacquiao, then that’s an option for him. I don’t think it would fit the description of being a “huge fight” for Brook, but it would be a winnable one. Brook can probably beat Vargas even if he were completely weight drained and fighting at only 30% capacity. Vargas is a very, very average fighter. I’m not surprised that Brook was recently interested in fighting him.
“His weight of 176lbs for the 30-day weigh-in, that tells me Kell Brook has no intention of coming back to welterweight,” said Malignaggi to Fighthub.com. “You’re weighing 176lbs at 30 days out for a 160 pound fight. If your 30 days out for a 160lb fight and you’re weighing 176, you are really struggling to make 147. If I’ve got to kill myself to make the welterweight limit and my reward after finally making the weight is going to fight the guy right there [Errol Spence], you know, I’m good. I’m going to pass on that one. You’re killing yourself so much to make weight. Instead of being rewarded, you’ve got to see that guy [Spence]. That’s not working. To me, it’ll be a business decision. Kell will go up to the junior middleweight limit, even if he doesn’t beat Golovkin,” said Malignaggi.
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