June 23, 2021

Adrien Broner: I’ll Destroy 135 If I Return To Division; I Can Still Make The Weight

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Adrien Broner’s on-again, off-again relationship with boxing is apparently on again, as the boxer has plans to come out of retirement.

The inactive 31-year-old Broner (33-4-1, 24 KOs) has danced around the 135, 140 and 147 divisions since 2013, picking and choosing fights in certain classes as his weight outside of training has ballooned.

The next time the former four-division champion steps into the ring, he has plans to drop down a weight class after last fighting Manny Pacquiao as a welterweight in January 2019 during a one-sided loss.

“I want to be world champion again,” Broner told the Wyatt Live podcast. “140, 135 if it’s the right opponent. I’m not playing at 135, but I think my next fight will be at 140. At this point, it doesn’t matter who I fight. I can fight my assistant, and they’re going to see me. They don’t care.

“I’m a natural lightweight, and if I come back to 135, I’ll destroy the weight class because I can still make the weight honestly. Yeah, I can still make the weight. I would have to sacrifice, but I can make it through.”

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Broner said he first moved up from 135 to 147 in 2013 when he bested Paulie Malignaggi because “I just know I can beat those guys … if everybody knows, I’m really not a welterweight at all.”

Broner has never lost at 135 pounds. In recent months, he’s been going off on social media against many of the division’s young fighters, challenging the likes of Devin Haney to fights for exorbitant sums of money.

Broner said he currently has a list of five potential opponents to choose from, and Ivan Redkach, who last competed as a welterweight in a loss to Danny Garcia, is one of them.

Broner has his sights set on fighting by the end of 2020.

“If everything opens back up and they open up the arena, then I might fight in December,” said Broner. “If not, then I’m not fighting until 2021. I’d be damned if I’m fighting [without fans]. I can’t because they gotta pay me. If my money is right, they are going to have a hell of a fight. In the second half of my career, it’s going to be everything that I want and the way I want to do it. It’s going to be all my way.”

Broner has not felt the thrill of victory since February 2017 when he sneaked by with a split decision win over Adrian Granados.

He is 0-2-1 in his last three fights, having also lost to Mikey Garcia and fighting to a draw against Jessie Vargas in addition to the Pacquiao defeat.

Manouk Akopyan is a sports journalist and member of the Boxing Writers Assn. of America since 2011. He has written for the likes of the LA Times, Guardian, USA Today, Philadelphia Inquirer, Men’s Health and NFL.com. He can be reached on Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and YouTube at @ManoukAkopyan or via email at manouk[dot]akopyan[at]gmail.com.