Gervonta ‘Tank’ Davis and Frank Martin will be fighting under the WBA’s new rehydration rule next month on June 15th in their lightweight title.

This is reportedly a new rule for the World Boxing Association that will apply to all the weight classes involving their belts. Mayweather Promotions CEO Leonard Ellerbe is in favor of it, saying  on X that it puts the “Weight bullies in check.”

Grandfather Clause: A Loophole for Weight Bullies?

There is no word yet on whether the WBA will have a grandfather clause that will allow their current champions, the ones who rehydrate absurd amounts of weight, to continue to do this and focus the rule on fighters who capture belts later.

It’s like when Major League Baseball (MLB) banned the spitball in 1920 but permitted 17 pitchers that used the wet pitch to continue for the remainder of their careers. Obviously, that didn’t stop other pitchers from using the spitter, but they had to be sneaky about it.

If the WBA has a grandfather clause, it will allow their weight bully champions to hold onto their titles without having to vacate. Some champions, accustomed to rehydrating 20+ lbs, would be greatly handicapped under a rehydration rule that capped their rehydrated weight to 10 lbs.

Rehydration Limit’s Potential Impact on the Sport

But in terms of fairness and safety, it’s important that sanctioning bodies have a strict rehydration rule of 10 lbs to keep some champions or challengers from gaming the system by draining down 20+ lbs to compete in weight classes that their frames shouldn’t allow for. It’s risky for fighters to compete against a much larger fighter.

It’s unclear what the rehydration limit is, but it’s likely the same as the 10 lbs that the IBF has with their organization. With the WBA creating a rehydration limit, only the WBC and WBO are the last refuge for champions who don’t have to deal with this.

If the World Boxing Council follows the WBA and IBF in creating a 10-lb rehydration rule, it could mess up the career of their WBC light welterweight champion Devin Haney, who looks massive after rehydrating for his fights at 140. It’s possible that he would move up to 147 or target the WBO title at 140, which still doesn’t have a rehydration limit.

Impact on Tank Davis

“Yeah, WBA new rule,” said Errol Spence on social media about the new rehydration limit.

“I’m not sure what you all are talking bout. But are you all telling me I have enough power to tell the WBA what to do? I don’t even know what is going on,” said Tank Davis about the WBA’s rehydration limit.

The WBA’s new rehydration rule shouldn’t be a big deal for ‘regular’ Tank Davis because he doesn’t look like a massive weight bully like some fighters when he rehydrations for fights.

Read the full article here