Fighting in the lightweight division is clearly not a viable option for undefeated Brandon Rios, who failed to make weight for the second straight time. Rios came in two pounds above the 135-pound limit, and he wasn’t able to shed the pounds after the additional hour given to him to make weight.
Fortunately for Rios, his opponent, Richard Abril, was willing to play ball, and the fight will go on as scheduled. However, Rios has been handed a $45,000 fine by the Nevada State Athletic Commission, and he’ll no longer be fighting for the vacant WBA lightweight title. Luckily for Rios, there are no stipulations on his weight at fight time, and he’ll be free to fully rehydrate.
Rios failing to make weight isn’t really surprising, considering how drained he looked at the weigh-ins of his previous bout against John Murray. He wasn’t able to make the weight then either, prompting many to suggest a move to the junior welterweight division. With his second straight failed attempt to make weight, Rios has finally gotten the message, and he’ll no longer fight in the lightweight division.
“Regardless of the outcome Saturday night, junior welterweight will be his new home,” Top Rank vice-president Carl Moretti said about Rios in an interview with ESPN. “He tried to make lightweight. I think he was upset and disappointed, too. It is what it is and he’ll deal with it.”
Rios wasn’t really affected by his tough weight cut against Murray – eventually stopping him in the 11th round of their Dec. 3 matchup, but he’ll be in for a tougher test against Richard. Abril might be the underdog coming into the fight, but he’s definitely good enough to pull off an upset. He doesn’t seem intimidated by Rios, and that might just lead to a very entertaining fight.
“You know why Rios is called Bam-Bam? Because he has pebbles for brains,” Abril said. “He has to pay a guy to teach him to eat right? I learned how to do that when I was three. He’s an idiot. I’m going to break his mouth, break his heart, and break his piggy bank. Come on down Bam-Bam.”