Brandon Rios, who lost his WBA lightweight title on the scales before his TKO win over John Murray on Saturday night in New York, will be adding nutritionist and all-around conditioning guru Victor Conte to his team, according to manager Cameron Dunkin. From The Ring:
"We're going to bring in Victor Conte. I'm going to have him send me a real diet for Brandon. Brandon is a kid who doesn't mind exercise, but he's going to have to train more. ... [H]e'll put him on the right foods. We'll talk to Conte, but we're not going to ask Brandon to become what he isn't."
Honestly, and I don't mean this at some big slam toward Cameron Dunkin, if they want to maximize Brandon Rios instead of just letting him have the career his regular habits have, pushing him to be something he currently isn't but could be is probably a good idea. Dunkin also manages Kelly Pavlik, who was never pushed too hard to be something he isn't, and look how that's turned out.
Rios is very good. He's very tough, he hits hard, and he takes a shot with the best of them. He can beat better boxers simply because he's almost impossible to back down.
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And it's not just this one fight; he's struggled to make weight for fights where he did hit the 135 pound limit. He's a huge lightweight, and not exactly the most cut guy in the world, either. He puts on weight between fights. Dunkin says he's got a fast food issue.
It makes sense to bring in Conte, but you can't just have Conte give him a diet and expect him to stick to it. This has to become a serious adjustment from Brandon Rios, or his time at the top will be even shorter than his fighting style would dictate. If he's purely hard-wired to be who he is, then there will be trouble sooner than later making weight at 140 or 147, too. They have to attack this problem. Conte would be a good move, but not unless they're seriously dedicated to using him properly.