Lose to Gervonta Davis, face rearranged by Keith Thurman – what next?

Mario Barrios face nose

Questions got raised when Mario Barrios decided to move up to 147 pounds immediately after losing to Gervonta Davis. Saturday night validated many of those queries.

Barrios jumped seven pounds to take on Keith Thurman, a seasoned champion and former unified belt holder at welterweight. The result was the Texan getting his face rearranged for him and nose badly busted.

Unexpectedly, Thurman was in irresistible form. He dominated Barrios for the duration despite over three years out of action.

It was like Keith had never been away. For Barrios, it was a second damaging defeat in a row.

The 26-year-old now faces a big decision. Does the young star move back down to 140 [if it’s possible], or does Barrios head into the also-ranks of his new division?

Either way, he badly needs a victory in his next bout.

Gervonta Davis Mario Barrios
Sean Michael Ham


Losing to Davis could be forgiven, but then taking on someone like Thurman in his very next fight shows more balls than brains.

Photos circulating on social media of Barrios labeling the fighter ‘Rocky from the movie Mask’ will sting, and he certainly will need a boost from his team moving forward.

If he does remain at 147, there will still be plenty of options open to him. Samuel Vargas, Brad Solomon, or Chris Algieri could be solid building blocks for Barrios.

However, this must be the preferred option if he can make it down to 140 for another run. If Thurman proved anything, it’s that Barrios is now ready for some of the more prominent names the welterweight division has to offer.

Some fighters, like Adrien Broner, Mikey Garcia, and Maurice Hooker – for instance, won’t command as much weight as others. But Barrios would be well advised to move back down on the evidence of Saturday night’s Pay Per View.


Regarding Thurman, his star is back in the championship sky. ‘One Time’ can begin to think about becoming a two-time welterweight titleholder or at least getting a shot.

Terence Crawford springs to mind when considering where Thurman could go after an impressive victory.

One thing that is for sure is it will be on the paid platform.

Phil Jay – Editor of World Boxing News since 2010 with over one billion views. Follow WBN on Twitter @WorldBoxingNews.