By: Hans Themistode
The moment the scale underneath the feet of Joseph Diaz read 133.6 pounds, Tevin Farmer couldn’t stop himself from grinning.
With Diaz unable to make the 130 pound limit for his IBF-mandated title defense against Tajikistan Rakhimov this past weekend, the championship he worked so hard to acquire against the aforementioned Farmer was taken away from him.
To the former belt-holder, there was something ever so satisfying about Diaz losing his belt on the scale.
“Karma is a b*tch,” said Farmer during an interview with Fight Hub TV. “What goes around comes around.”
For Philadelphia’s Farmer, Diaz (31-1-1, 15 KOs) wouldn’t have lost his title in the first place if he did right by him. Roughly one year ago, Farmer fought Diaz inside of a packed pre-pandemic arena in Miami Florida. Although many expected their contest to be a close one, few believed Farmer (30-5-1, 6 KOs) wouldn’t walk away with his world title still safely wrapped around his waist.
Still, to the surprise of many, Farmer didn’t look like the slick boxer everyone had grown accustomed to seeing. Diaz tagged his man with shots that normally whiz inches near the head of Farmer. Simply put, the former titlist was off his A game.
With the first defeat of his career in over eight years, Farmer attempted to make amends for his poor outing. Not needing anytime to ponder his future, Farmer immediately enacted his rematch clause. Talks progressed and part two between them started to look more and more like a reality.
However, as was the case with most sports at the time, COVID-19 crumpled up their bout agreement as the deadly disease made it nearly impossible for the pair to enter the ring against one another at the time.
According to Farmer, his clause allowed him a five-month window in which their rematch had to take place. For team Diaz, on the other hand, regardless of a worldwide pandemic, the contract had expired.
Farmer remains adamant that he should be given more time due to the current circumstances of COVID-19. But, by all accounts, Diaz appears more than willing to run things back with Farmer as long as a few extra zeros are attached to his paycheck.
The chance to avenge the loss was once priority number one for Farmer. But, with Diaz no longer holding his world title, Farmer is now lukewarm about the idea.
“Right now it’s pointless. The whole point of the rematch clause was to fight for my title again but it didn’t happen. I had to fight him within five months but we couldn’t fight because of Covid. I could’ve sued a lot of people but that’s not what I’m about so I took it on the chin.”
It isn’t just that Farmer is now uninterested in facing Diaz if his title isn’t on the line. With the multiple losses Farmer has plastered to his resume, he believes that if he attempts to avenge his defeat to Diaz, that would mean that he would have to chase down everyone else who handed him a loss as well.
“I don’t care about avenging the loss because that means I gotta go avenge every loss that I took. That’s like me saying I’m going to fight Jose Pedraza again or the guy that beat me in my first pro fight. It’s really nothing.”
At the moment, Farmer appears to be fully focused on what lies ahead. While he’s still interested in hoisting another world title, Farmer is more concerned with locking down his next fight date. Nothing is set in stone quite yet, but, he does have an idea on when he will be able to return.
“As of right now we’re working on a date in April. Hopefully, we can get the date and go from there.”
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.