By Jake Donovan
From the moment he suffered his first defeat—losing his super featherweight title—Alberto Machado didn’t want to entertain any fight other than a rematch with Andrew Cancio.
His team didn’t take as much issue with the pursuit as with the weight at which it would take place.
At 5’10”, Puerto Rico’s Machado (21-1, 17KOs) literally stands out from the rest of the pack in the 130-pound super featherweight division. There were concerns about how he made weight for his first fight with Cancio (20-4-2, 15KOs), who recovered from a knockdown to floor Machado three times en route to an upset 4th round knockout win this past February.
“After the fight, there was talk of Alberto moving up to 135, with the concern of how he had such a difficult time making weight,” Bryan Perez, vice president of operations for Promociones Miguel Cotto told BoxingScene.com back when a rematch was still being discussed. “But as far as he’s concerned, the rematch remains his first and only option.”
Machado eventually got his wish, as the two will run it back on June 21. The sequel will return to the scene of the crime, as DAZN will once again stream the event live from Fantasy Springs Casino in Indio, Calif. Weight won’t be an issue this time around, nor will Machado’s ability to effectively carry into into the ring and throughout the night.
“In the last fight, I only fought the first round at full strength,” Machado stated during a recent media conference call. “After that, I didn't have any more energy, I was spent.
“I've always said that I'm a fighter who respects the sport. I love what I do. I do what I have to do in training. This time is no exception. I've been training very well to take the title back to Puerto Rico and bring joy to my family and friends over there.”
Before all that can happen—and even before his team would even sign off for the rematch—there had to come assurances that his health wasn’t going to be at risk.
“When we sat down with Alberto about the rematch, we asked him about the option about moving in weight,” Perez told BoxingScene.com. “He said that they were going to consider it, but first he wanted to sit down with his medical staff to see if they were willing to do the weight in great condition for this fight on June 21st.
“The answer was yes. He needed more time to do his training. This way it was going to be done the right way as he usually does. We left the call up to him to give him the option to move in weight, but he wanted the rematch, and that's the way it went through.”
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox