Hearn says Kell Brook must accept rehydration clause for Khan fight
By Scott Gilfoid: Kell Brook is going to need to swallow his pride and forget his ego and accept the 10 pound rehydration clause that Amir Khan is asking for if he wants the fight with him in early 2019, according to Matchroom Boxing promoter Eddie Hearn.
Khan (33-4, 20 KOs) has made it crystal clear that for him accept a fight against Brook (37-2, 26 KOs), who appears very NEEDY at the moment, he’s going to need to agree to the second day 10-lb rehydration clause that he’s asking for him to accept. This is on top of the 147 lb weigh-in limit that Khan wants for the fight. Brook, 32, is still rejecting the second day 10 lb rehydration limit that Khan is asking for him to say yes to, so the fight is stuck in limbo. Hearn thinks that Khan isn’t going to back down from his request for the rehydration limit, mostly because he has other options for fights against the likes of Manny Pacquiao, Errol Spence Jr., Danny Garcia, Keith Thurman and Shawn Porter. Brook only has one option, and that’s Khan. Brook isn’t super excited about testing himself against the top dogs at 154 like Jarrett Hurd, Erislandy Lara, Jermell Charlo and Jaime Munguia. You can’t blame Brook for not wanting to fight those talents. They all hit hard, and there’s a possibility he could suffer another eye injury if he were to take a fight against any of those four hard hitting junior middleweights.
“This is a big fight, and I would kick myself if it didn’t happen,” Hearn said to Fighthype. “Kell is going to have to accept things in this fight that he either doesn’t want to or maybe he shouldn’t. But to get the fight, he’s going to have to accept things he doesn’t want. He’s already accepted 147. He didn’t want to accept that. Amir wants the rehydration clause. At the moment, Kell hasn’t accepted that. He’ll have to accept it if he wants the fight or else Amir will have to back down,” Hearn said.
Here are the reasons why Brook MUST accept Khan’s 10 lb rehydration clause:
– Brook won’t get fight if he doesn’t accept it
– 154 lb division lacks big money fights for Brook
– Possibility Brook’s increasingly fragile eye sockets won’t hold up to the pounding in 154 lb division from the brutes in that weight class
– Brook’s inability to fight at 147 at this point in his career against the top dogs. Yeah, Brook can still make 147, but he’s basically a six-round fighter after he makes weight. As we saw in his fight against Errol Spence Jr. last year, Brook weakens and fades after six rounds when fighting in the welterweight division. Brook will likely be fine being drained against a guy like Khan, but he won’t do well against the rugged 147 lb fighters like Shawn Porter, Terence Crawford, Spence, Danny Garcia and Manny Pacquiao. It’s unlikely that Brook will ever get a fight against Pacquiao or Keith Thurman, so you can’t include them as possible payday fights for him.
– Brooks eye problems could return at any time, especially if he faces opposition with any kind of punching power. As such, Brook is going to need to accept the 10 lb reydration clause against the light hitting Khan whether he wants to or not. If Brook gets stubborn about it and refuses to agree to the terms that Khan wants, it’ highly unlikely that Amir will back down and give him the fight. That means Brook will need to fight the menacing guys at 154, and find out how rough things can be when he’s facing rugged guys in his natural weight class. Heck, you cant even say that the junior middleweight division is Brook’s natural weight class. For a guy that rehydrates to 170+, Brook is clearly a middleweight. He’s done well to make weight all these years at 147 to take advantage of his huge size advantage over guys in the welterweight division, but he can no longer do that against the best, not that he was ever fighting the best on a frequent basis. Brook now needs to fight guys his own size more or less at 154 or 160, and he doesn’t seem eager to do that. A lot of boxing fans have been calling Brook a weight bully for years due to him melting down to fight at 147 against smaller guys. Well, he can’t do that and beat the best obviously. Brook can beat Khan though, because he’s not among the top five at welterweight. He’s a top tier fighter, but not one of the best, and he has a chin problem that is always in the background, ready to ear it’s ugly head at a moment’ notice, even when he’s facing mediocre opposition like Samuel Vargas. Khan almost lost his last fight to Vargas, which means he can’t even be trusted when fighting fringe level fighters. That’s got to be more than a little worrisome to both Brook and Hearn, as they need Khan to be winning and looking good for the Khan-Brook fight to be the monster that they want it to be.
Brook is in a bad position to negotiate for anything in a fight against Khan, because he doesn’t have the same options. It’s Brook that wants the fight with Khan, not the other way around. If Brook rejects the rehydration clause that Khan is asking for, then he won’t get the fight and he’ll be stuck fighting at junior middleweight. There’s a lot less money for Brook to make at 154 than there is against Khan at 147.
“All I can ever do is offer a deal to a fighter and say, ‘if you accept these terms, you have the Amir Khan fight,’ and that’s how it’ll be with Kell Brook, because I think Amir Khan is looking at other options,” Hearn said. “Kell is looking at one option, and I think Kell probably wants the fight more than Amir, because Amir does have other options. So naturally, he’s [Brook] going to want this fight, maybe on the weight, maybe on the rehydration, he’s going to have to do things he doesn’t want to do,” Hearn said.
Brook has made the 147 lb limit countless times, and he’s also dealt with the International Boxing Federation’s second day 10 lb rehydration limit, so it’s not as if he’s not done it before. Brook has successfully made the IBF 10 lb second day limit on five occasion in the past, and made less money than he’ll make in a fight against Khan in March of 2019. Its really a no-brainer if Brook has got his head screwed on straight. Of course, he’s got to agree to the 10-b rehydration clause for the Khan fight, because there’s too much money at stake for him not to agree to it. Besides, Brook will still likely easily win the fight by knockout. Brook still looked powerful last year even after the 6th round when he started gassing out against Spence in May of 2017 in their fight in Sheffield. Even if Brook does fade from being weakened by the 10 lb rehydration clause, he’ll have more than enough punching power to knockout Khan. As long as Brook doesn’t suffer another eye injury, he likely wins by knockout in the first six rounds of the fight. Brook is still going to be over 170 lbs on the night, and he’ll likely be enjoying a big 10 to 15 lb weight advantage over Khan. In terms of weights, it’s going to be totally unfair for Khan. He’s going to be fighting a middleweight, and it doesn’t matter if there will be a 10 lb rehydration clause. Brook is still going to be well over 170 lbs on the night, and it’s not going to be a fair fight. You can argue that Khan should have requested a 5-lb rehydration clause, and made the weigh-in 30 minutes before the fight. At least that way, the weights would be more equal at the time the two stepped foot inside the ring. Khan is giving Brook a huge break by only asking for a 10 lb rehydration limit instead of taking it to the next level by sticking in a $1 million per pound weight penalty and having a smaller rehydration limit of five pounds.
“A loss to Brook would hurt Amir Khan’s legacy,” Hearn said. “If Amir Khan doesn’t fight Brook, it’s going to hurt his legacy. So he’s better off, Amir, giving the fans what they want [by fighting Kell Brook]. Coming out and saying, ‘Look, I can fight Manny Pacquiao. I can fight Spence. I’m going to give you what you want. If he doesn’t fight Brook, it’s going to hurt his legacy. I want to deliver the fight to him [Kell]. I can’t convince Amir to do what he doesn’t want to do. I will get the best deal for you and present it to you, and it’s up to you if you don’t like certain things. I’ve got to go back to Amir and say, ‘If you do that, then it’s on.’ My advice to Kell is to make the fight on any terms you need except for things that might affect you in the fight. So if it’s the rehydration clause and you think you can’t win the fight, if he makes you rehydrate, then don’t take the fight. But you’ve done it before. The argument is from the other side is, ‘Yeah, that was for an IBF title. It’s not for a world title. Why should I do that? And Amir will say, ‘That’s the terms,’” said Hearn.
It’s unclear what Hearn is babbling about when he talks about Khan’s legacy being hurt if he fails to fight Brook. Khan’s legacy won’t be hurt, because he’s not really accomplished a great deal as a pro. Khan only briefly held world titles at the pro level, and his wins were over old and shot guys for the most part. When Khan did step it up against Lamont Peterson and Danny Garcia, he lost. Since then, it’s been a long free-fall for Khan to the bottom. Khan hasn’t done anything since his back to back losses to Peterson and Garcia.
As for Brook, he’s not going to be hurt enough by the rehyration clause for it to keep him from winning the Khan fight. Brook could literally still win the fight even if Khan asked for a 5-lb rehydration clause in this writer’s opinion. Brook hits too hard, he’s too big, and just too talented for Khan for him to lose the fight no matter what rehydration clause that Amir asks for. Like I said, Brook is getting off easy though with Khan only asking for a 10 lb rehydration clause. Khan could have made it a lot stricter by sticking a tougher smaller rehydration limit and added a monstrous weight penalty that would stress out Brook to the point where he might have steepness nights.