By: Hans Themistode
Missing weight isn’t always a sign that a certain fighter didn’t take training camp seriously. With that being said, when you come in three and a half pounds over the limit, it is an immediate red flag.
For Joseph Diaz (31-1, 15 KOs), the seemingly disciplined super featherweight always appeared to take his job seriously. So when California native came in ridiculously overweight for his clash against mandatory challenger Shavkatdzhon Rakhimov, not only was he stripped of his IBF title but the confidence meter in him picking up the win fell considerably.
For the most part, Rakhimov (15-0, 12 KOs) is an unknown commodity. There is nothing is on his resume that screams impressive, despite his four fight knockout streak. In addition to the lack of big-name opponents he’s faced, Rakhimov will be fighting for the first time outside of Russia.
Make no mistake about it, nothing appears to be pointing in the direction of Diaz. The 28-year-old has not only come in overweight, but he seems to be wrapped up in a back and forth Twitter war with Tevin Farmer, the man Diaz defeated to win the title in the first place.
Still, even with the signs pointing favorably in the direction of Rakhimov, don’t expect him to pull off the win. Not only is the heavy-hitting contender’s resume sorely lacking, but he also hasn’t stepped foot inside the ring for nearly a year and a half. Pair that with this being his first contest stateside and the results ultimately won’t be kind to him.
Despite Diaz sneaking in a few extra snacks during his training camp, he’s a significantly more skilled fighter. He’s also faced a much higher level of opposition. There’s no excuse for coming in three and a half pounds over the weight limit but still, expect Diaz to box his way to a clear unanimous decision victory.