Who Is Oscar Rivas – Boxing’s First-Ever Bridgerweight Champion?

Published 10/23/2021, 1:21 AM EDT
Dillian Whyte and Oscar Rivas weigh In ahead of their fight tomorrow night at the O2 arena, London. 19th July 2019. Picture By Mark Robinson.


After a gruesome 12-round battle against Ryan Rozicki in Montreal, Oscar Rivas made history by becoming the first-ever WBC bridgerweight titleholder. The former heavyweight contender was already pretty successful in his professional career, boasting 27 wins besides one loss. Hence, he was clearly the frontrunner for the world title.

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But looking at the heavyweight division’s vicious roster, Rivas seemed far from gaining a world championship opportunity anytime soon. Meanwhile, a shift to the bridgerweight unit has instantly turned him into a champion. All of it could happen, only due to six-year-old Bridger Walker and WBC’s decision to honor his courage.

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In 2020, a six-year-old boy, Bridger Walker, put his life at stake and suffered massive injuries while rescuing his younger sister from a dog attack. WBC recognized the incident by introducing the Bridgerweight division (224 lbs) to lessen the flow of heavyweights in the existing roster.

That said, Oscar Rivas has already made a successful transition and is relishing sky-high success. The 34-year-old can now settle in the new division with his title. But on facing the scarcity of potential rivals, he can move up to the heavyweight division. Here’s all about him.

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The First-Ever Bridgerweight champion- Oscar Rivas

The Colombian boxer, a professional since 2009, has failed to terrorize the heavyweight division. He became the NABF heavyweight champion a few times before grabbing the IBF International and WBO NABO title. However, he suffered his maiden and only pro-defeat while targeting the WBC Interim heavyweight strap in 2019.

After Dillian Whyte sparked him in a 12-round clash, Rivas accepted one more fight in the heavyweight division. As WBC ordered to issue its first-ever bridgerweight strap, Rivas earned an easy shot at the world title. ‘Kaboom’ looked extremely sharp inside the ring against Ryan Rozicki.

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Following a 12-round war, Rivas had done enough to have his hands raised. His championship status will now bring in a lot of attention. And the Colombian fighter can continue being at the top unless he receives a new challenger. However, if the other sanctioning bodies of boxing don’t acknowledge the same, the future of the bridgerweight division looks bleak.

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As for Rivas, he is an A-listed boxer who can still hope for his chances in the heavyweight unit. In a mixed career of amateur and professional, Rivas has seen 37 wins and 7 losses. Hence, he clearly has the experience to defend his title, but only time will tell if he will be allowed to do so.

Do you think Oscar Rivas is a rightful champion now?

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Raj Sarkar

2732 articles

A senior boxing writer at EssentiallySports, Raj Sarkar is a mass media graduate who is currently pursuing his master’s degree in broadcast journalism. In addition to his current role, he has worked with the MMA team at EssentiallySports and has interviewed prominent fighters such as Ritu Phogat and 'The Red King' Rory MacDonald. Combining his bachelor's degree with his adoration for combat sports, he has earned a combined 3000 plus bylines over the last two years.

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