Kell Brook To Remain At Welterweight. Errol Spence Awaits
By: Sean Crose
There are those, of course, who are most certainly not fans of one Kell Brook. Indeed, they say the IBF welterweight champion had too many soft touches after besting the exciting Shawn Porter back in California in 2014. It’s also been implied that Brook is afraid to face threatening foes at welterweight. Still, it’s hard to argue the man isn’t up for a challenge now that he’s battled the dreaded Gennady Golovkin in fistic competition for the middleweight championship. Sure, Brook took a beating that led to his requiring surgery – but, man, he fought the most avoided guy in boxing without having to have been asked to twice. And he jumped up two entire weight divisions to do it.
And now, after having been told by everyone and his brother that Brook would never return to welterweight – he makes it clear that he’s returning to welterweight, straight into the path of one Errol Spence Junior, a man who may well be the future of boxing. Of course, no bout with Spence has been set, but the Texan is Brook’s IBF mandatory challenger. That means he has to face the rising American star if he wishes to hold onto his title.
“I had a meeting with Eddie,” Brook is quoted as saying by ESPN, “and told him I am not prepared to give up my title.” Eddie, for those who don’t know, is renowned British promoter Eddie Hearn, a man who – wait for it – has a knack for making fights fans want to see. “I am not,” ESPN has Brook saying, “willing to give up what I fought so hard for.” Truth be told, Brook would love to unify with “new” WBO welterweight champ Manny Pacquiao (heard of him?), but the 36-1 Englishman may end up facing Spence instead.
With that in mind, neither Spence nor Pacquiao is an easy out for Brook. Pacquiao looked damned good against Jessie Vargas last weekend. He may not have been the Pacquiao of old – but he was able to land against and fluster the far younger man effectively. As for Spence, he made easier work of the game Chris Algieri than even Pacquiao did. He also brought in a massive number of television viewers for his fight this summer against Leonard Bundu. To be sure, he’s a man to watch.
Of course, Brook himself was thought to be a man to watch at junior middleweight after the Golovkin loss. For the guy appeared to be so comfortable moving up in weight to face GGG, that it was hard for some to imagine him going back to the 147 lb universe again. Brook, however, has now made his intentions clear. The question is – how will the man look after suffering the kind of crushing loss Brook endured when he made the move into the middleweight realm.