#7 WBC cruiserweight contender Tony Bellew (20-2-1, 12 KO’s) made weight on Friday for his make or break fight aganst Valery Brudov (41-4, 28 KO’s) for their fight on Saturday night at the Echo Arena in Liverpool, UK. Bellew weighed in at 197 lbs, whereas Brudov weighed 192.25 lbs.
For Bellew, this is 22 lbs heavier than he weighed for his last fight against WBC light heavyweight champion Adonis Stevenson last November. Bellew has moved up in weight to the cruiserweight division due to his struggles to make weight at light heavyweight. With him now at a much heavier weight, Bellew feels that he’ll be stronger and will be able to fight at a higher level.
Bellew is putting a lot of pressure on himself to beat the 37-year-old Brudov, as he’s talking retirement if he loses to him. Bellew said to Sky Sports “It’s the be all or end all. It’s that big. If I can’t beat Valery Brudov then I’m not going to be a world champion and I just don’t think there’s much point in carrying on to be totally honest, so this is it for me.”
Bellew might as well have fought a top contender for this fight and be done with it if he’s going to see his fights as a situation where he’ll retire if he loses. Brudov isn’t a cruiserweight at this point in his career, and he’s definitely not in the class of the guys that Bellew will need to beat in order to prove himself worthy of a title shot like Rakhim Chakhkiev and Thabiso Mchunu. Those guys are a lot better than Brudov.
Unbeaten welterweight contender Kell Brook (31-0, 21 KO’s) weighed in at 151.3 lbs for his scheduled 10 round bout against tune-up opponent Alvaro Robles (17-2, 15 KO’s). Brook needs to win this fight in order to face the winner of the Paulie Malignaggi vs. Shawn Porter fight for the IBF welterweight title this summer. Robles weighed 151. It’s interesting that Brook once again is fighting over 147. It makes you wonder how much long he can continue to fight in the welterweight division. It would be a pity if he came in weight drained for his world title shot against the winner of the Porter-Malignaggi fight.
Brook is going to be taking a major step up in class when he does fight for a world title because his promoters have matched him against weak opposition his entire career for some reason. Brook has built up an impressive record, but he’s done it against B and C level opposition. Brook will have the power advantage over the likes of Malignaggi and Porter, but he still figures to struggle due to him taking such a big step up.
Lightweight contender Kevin Mitchell (36-2, 26 KO’s) weighed in at 139 lbs for his scheduled 8 round bout against Mikheil Avakyan (21-11-4, 8 KO’s). Mitchell could be fighting for a world title this year against IBF lightweight champion Miguel Vazquez. Avakyan weighed 138.7 lbs. This was another fight where the fighters weighed in over the weight class limit that they’re currently fighting in. It’s also a mismatch on paper, because Mitchell is clearly better than this guy by far.