After fighting primarily at welterweight for the first three years of his career, Jermell Charlo has remained at junior middleweight since June 2011 and has demonstrated exceptional discipline.
It’s rare in boxing to stay in the same weight class for 11 years, but the undisputed 154-pound champion doesn’t expect to move up to middleweight anytime soon. After facing Tim Tszyu, I will continue to defend my IBF, WBA, WBC and WBO belts.
They were scheduled to clash in Las Vegas on January 28, but the fight was postponed after Charlo injured his left leg in training camp.
“My whole career,” Charlo replied when asked recently how long he’d struggled at this weight. [Errol Spence Jr.] at 147. We are all comfortable gaining weight, but we cannot predict what will happen in the future. And I’m ready to get it as soon as you’re ready to see it.
Charlo (35-1-1, 19 KOs) knocked out Argentina’s Brian Castano (17-1-2, 12 KOs) in the 10th round of the rematch at Dignity Health Sports Park on May 14. , became boxing’s first fully unified 154-pound champion. at Carson, California. Most handicappers consistently have Charlo as his 3-1 favorite to beat Tszyu (21-0, 15 KOs), Charlo’s mandatory challenger for his WBO title. Installed.
“I make the ’54 very easy,” said Charlo. “I’m 10 pounds overweight [early in training camp]. I’m sharp. I’m in shape I don’t come in and talk about what I’m doing. This is my lifestyle. Boxing is more than just a sport. When you’re trying to win a title, you’re going to win and you’ll have fun later. We’re going to enjoy it when we’re sitting in our big mansion and chilling out with family, friends, etc. Did it. ‘ And sometimes sit down, [think] We’ve come this far, but we’re not done yet. It’s not over yet for me. I’m just too hungry now. “
The Houston native admitted he would at least consider jumping up to the middleweight limit of 160 if his twin brother, Jermall Charlo, gave up the WBC belt to fight at the 168-pound division. Still, Jermell Charlo needs a high-profile opportunity to consider giving up the 154-pound title to fight at middleweight.
In addition to his mandatory bouts against Tszyu, Charlo has mandatory defenses against Bakhram Murtazaliev and Sebastian Fundora.
Russia’s Murtazariev (21-0, 16 KOs) is the frontrunner in the IBF’s 154-pound division. Fundora (20-0-1, 13 KOs) hails from Coachella, Calif. and owns the WBC Interim Super Welterweight title.
Keith Idec is a Senior Writer and Columnist at BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on his Twitter @Idecboxing.