by David P. Greisman
Adrien Broner seems as if he will have little difficulty making the lightweight limit for his Feb. 16 title defense against Gavin Rees at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, according to figures provided by World Boxing Council official William Boodhoo.
Broner came in at 145 pounds on Jan. 18, a figure certified by Bernie Profato of the Ohio athletic commission, according to the WBC. That was several pounds under the 10 percent range — 149 pounds — required by the WBC for its 30-day interval weigh-ins. Broner’s weight was taken 28 days before he is to step on the scale for the pre-fight weigh-in.
Rees, meanwhile, was at 151.5 pounds, but that figure might just deserve an asterisk. Though he was 2.5 pounds over, his weight was taken days earlier than necessary on Jan. 14 (and certified by Dennis Gilmartin of the British Boxing Board of Control).
“Rees’ weight is slightly above the safety limit but is understandable as it was taken as he was about to travel to the USA,” Boodhoo told BoxingScene.com via email.
Both will need to be within 5 percent of the lightweight limit — 142 pounds — for the next interval weigh-in, which is supposed to come 7 days before the final weigh-in. This disclaimer is necessary: Not all boxers in WBC title fights have been providing their weights at these intervals, and the sanctioning body has not enforced compliance with its rules.
The undefeated Broner is coming off his career-best performance, a dominant eighth-round stoppage of Antonio DeMarco that added a lightweight title to the belt he’d previously held at junior lightweight. The 23-year-old from Cincinnati is now 25-0 with 21 knockouts.
Rees, a 32-year-old from Wales, is 37-1 with 18 knockouts and 1 technical draw. His sole loss came 2008, when he was stopped in the 12th round by Andriy Kotelnik.
David P. Greisman is a member of the Boxing Writers Association of America. Follow David on Twitter @fightingwords2 or send questions/comments via email at [email protected]