By Scott Gilfoid: British promoter Eddie Hearn says the rehydration clause that Amir ‘King’ Khan 33-4, 20 KOs) is asking for could keep the fight from taking place in March or May of next year.
Despite being the one that has been chasing Khan for the last 10 years trying to get a fight against him, Brook is stubbornly refusing to be limited in rehyrating as much as possible after he makes the 147 lb limit for the fight. Brook has seemingly dug his feet into the sand, and is entrenched with his position of not being willing to to the 10 pound rehydration limit.
Khan wants Brook to agree to a 10 lb rehydration limit along with him moving down in weight seven pounds from 154 to 147 to fight him at the welterweight limit without the benefit of a catchweight to ease his troubles. While Brook has agreed to the 147 lb weight limit for the fight, he’s not agreeing to the 10 lb rehydration clause, according to Hearn. Brook wants to be able to rehydrate fully after he makes weight the weigh-in.
The main problem is the weight,” Hearn said ESPN.com. “Amir wants it at 147 and wants a 10-pound rehydration clause.”
Khan, 32, wants a secondary weigh-in on the day of the fight after both fighters make weight the Friday before the fight. The secondary weigh-in would have a weight limit of 147 lbs. Normally, the 10 lb reyhdration limit isn’t required for fights that don’t involve an IBF title Khan wants the rehydration limit to keep middleweight-sized Brook to keep from rehydrating into the 170s, and marching into the fight with a 10 to 15 pound weight advantage over him. Khan would still have the hand and food speed advantage over Brook, but it might be too much if he’s facing a middleweight on the night.
“Brook says I’ll do it at 147 but if you make me weigh 147 then I’m not weighing in again,” Hearn said. “That’s fair enough. So we’re negotiating at the moment. The fight could take place in March. It could also take place in May.”
It looks like Hearn is going to try and get Khan to back down from his insistence on a rehydration clause for the fight. This could seal Khan’s fate if he agrees to fight Brook without the rehyration limit. Without it, Brook will rehydrate to his heart’s content and possibly walk into the ring in the 170s against Khan, who will likely be no heavier than 155 on the night. If you do the math, there aren’t too many fighters that are going to beat an opponent that outweighs them by 15 to 20 lbs. Sometimes a fighter can beat a much heavier opponent, but rarely. Brook couldn’t even beat a guy the same size as him as Gennady Golovkin, who came into the fight with him almost same weight in 2016. Brook quit in the 5th round after suffering a busted eye socket.
Hearn is still excited at trying to make the Khan vs. Brook fight happen. Hearn is talking about wanting to put the Khan-Brook fight in the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff, Wales. This is the same venue that heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua has been fighting lately against Carlos Takam and Joseph Parker. Hopefully for Khan and Brook’s sake there won’t be controversy in a fight in that venue like there was in Joshua’s two fights. Both of Joshua’s matches against Takam and Parker were stained by arguably poor officiating by the referees that worked the fight. Joshua-Takam was stopped prematurely when the referee suddenly stopped the fight without warning in the 10th round and gave Joshua a knockout win. Takam looked perfectly fine at the time of the stoppage. In the Joshua-Parker fight, the referee prevented inside fighting, which handicapped the shorter fighter Parker.
Khan is in a good position to turn his back on Brook permanently, as he’s got a lot of potential fights against the likes of Manny Pacquiao, Adrien Broner, Shawn Porter Errol Spence Jr., Danny Garcia and Terence Crawford at 147. The only fights Brook has is against the monsters at 154 in Jermell Charlo, Jarrett Hurd, Erislandy Lara and Jaime Munguia. None of those would be big money fights, and all of them would involve a likely bad ending for Brook. He may not want to admit it, but Brook has his back against a wall with the Khan negotiations. The only there’s going to be a happy ending for Brook is if Khan feels charitable and agrees to drop his wish for the 10 lb rehydration clause. Khan would have to feel sorry for Brook in order to do that, as he’s got to know that he holds all the cards when it comes to the negotiations. Khan is the A-side guy, and he’s the one with interesting options in terms of big money fights. Brook’s options are dismal involving him fighting the monsters at junior middleweight for little money, and an outcome that promises a bad ending for him.
“I said, ‘There’s no title on the line so no need for a rehydration clause.’ You’ve looked me in the eye now & told the world you want it, so let me take care of business (on Dec. 8) & let’s make the fight,” Brook said to ESPN.com about a fight between him and Khan after he takes care of his December 8 fight against Michael Zerafa.
It’s going to be interesting to see what happens with if Khan refuses to bend with his desire for the rehydration limit. Does Brook walk away and face guys from his own weight class or does Hearn try and lure more welterweights to face him? It’s likely Brook won’t want any of the hard work that would come from him fighting guys in his own weight class like Charlo, Lara, Munguia and Hurd. It’s easier to find smaller guys to fight where you have a large weight advantage over therm.
Brook is facing former Peter Quillin knockout victim Michael Zerafa (25-2, 14 KOs) next month on December 8 at the Sheffield Arena in Sheffield, England. Brook isn’t doing much to build up the Khan fight by taking on another soft tune-up level opponent similar to his previous opponent Sergey Rabchenko. Zerafa is clear step down from Rabchyenko. At least with Rabchenko, he had past wins over Ryan Rhodes, Cedric Vitu, Bradley Pryce and a controversial loss to Anthony Mundine. Zerafa has only fought one world class opponent in Peter Quillin, and he was knocked out by him in the 5th round in 2015. Zerafa was also beaten by former Luis Arias knockout victim Arif Magomedov.