Terence Crawford doesn’t appear to be in line with his promoter Bob Arum’s goal of having him help out with building up interest in his stultified career by self-promoting. Crawford, 33, is resistant to self-promoting, and he’s going to leave it up to his promoters to do – or not to do – the work for him.
In a sign that Crawford (37-0, 28 KOs) isn’t willing to entertain Arum’s vision of him hyping his fights the way Teofimo Lopez does, Terence says it’s Arum’s job to do the promoting.
The 23-year-old Teofimo ‘gets it’ and understands the importance of self-promotion, but judging by Crawford’s comments, he doesn’t value it.
There are plenty of fighters who have become super popular without self-promoting in the way Arum would like to see from Crawford. These are some of them:
- Manny Pacquiao
- Vasily Lomachenko
- Canelo Alvarez
- Miguel Cotto
But in the case of those fighters, they had/have more entertaining fighting styles than Crawford. You can’t compare Crawford’s counter-punching, pot-shotting style of fighting to the way that Cotto, Canelo, Lomachenko, and Pacquiao fight.
Additionally, Pacquiao, Cotto, and Canelo had/have their own countries that backed them. Crawford doesn’t have that. He’s got a following in his hometown of Omaha, Nebraska, but that’s not a country. For that reason, Crawford must work hard on social media to create some interest in his career.
Unfortunately for the 12-year pro-Crawford, his popularity isn’t ascending the way it needs to be for him to become a star.
Yeah, Crawford is ranked high on the pound-for-pound lists, but those lists are assembled by diehard ultra hardcore boxing fans, not by the casual fans, who follow exciting fighters that entertain both inside and outside of the ring.
“That’s not my job, I’m not a promoter. What am I? A fighter. I get paid to fight, I don’t get paid to promote. He gets paid to promote. He’s supposed to promote me,” said Crawford to the AK & Barak Show @SiriusXMBoxing.
As you can tell, Crawford appears to be resistant to change and is saying some of the stuff that has been mouthed by his boxing fans on social media. Crawford doesn’t seem to grasp what his 90-year-old promoter Arum is trying to impress upon him.
It is the fighter’s job to self-promote themselves outside of the ring, and it always has been. The fighters that have done well at self-promoting themselves, like Muhammad Ali, George Foreman, Oscar De La Hoya, and Floyd Mayweather Jr, have made a lot of money by becoming super popular. On the flip side, the fighters that haven’t worked hard in self-promoting have made less money.
“It p***ed me off because I’m one of the most loyal people,” said Crawford. “For him to say some foolish s*** like that, it made me look at him a totally different way,” said Crawford about Arum’s comments about him.
“Release me now and you don’t have to lose money no more.”
Crawford will be leaving Top Rank in 2021 when his contract with them runs out. But his comments about his promoters needing to be the one to promote his career suggests that he’s not going to make an effort to promote himself outside of the ring.
Whoever signs Crawford will be inheriting Arum’s problem, and they’ll be stuck with a fighter that is ranked high by the people that put together pound-for-pound lists, but he won’t be popular nationally in the United States. In other words, Crawford likely won’t make money for the promoter that takes a chance on him.
Arum says he’s lost a lot of money on Crawford’s fights and doesn’t want to continue to have that happen. Hence, he’s not so gently encouraged Crawford to start working on promoting himself outside of the ring. Sadly, Crawford sounds defiant and unwilling to help out, even though he would be helping himself by doing so. Crawford doesn’t get it.
For him to be putting the burden on Top Rank to promote him to make him a star, he doesn’t seem to grasp that it’s his burden to do the work Top Rank has a whole stable of fighters they need to promote.
They can’t spit out press releases on Crawford 365 days a year. Crawford is the one that needs to be on social media, talking to his followers and discussing fights that he would like.
Crawford is getting up there in age at 33, and he doesn’t have a lot of time to increase his popularity with the casual boxing fans. He should already know by now that he’s not going to be turned into a star by his promoters. That’s not possible for the reasons I mentioned. Top Rank can’t focus entirely on Crawford, especially if his fighting style isn’t as entertaining as the more popular fighters like Canelo Alvarez, Teofimo Lopez, Errol Spence Jr, Gervonta ‘Tank’ Davis, and Ryan Garcia.
It would be a good idea for Crawford not to listen to his enablers on social media, who encourages him to leave the promotion of his career entirely up to Top Rank. Those boxing fans don’t understand that there are no promoters who can work exclusively on one fighter’s career daily on social media. That’s the job of the fighter. It’s also the fighter’s job to give as many interviews as possible so that the boxing public can learn about them.
Last weekend, Crawford said he wouldn’t give interviews to certain media members unless they were his supporters. So unless they were saying favorable things about Crawford, he wouldn’t give them interviews. That’s another example of Crawford hurting his own career.
Arum knows what he’s talking about in wanting Crawford to help him create interest in himself and his career. The fact that Crawford appears to be resistant to that idea is troubling.
He’s putting the promoting of his fights squarely on Arum and Top Rank’s shoulders, but it’s clear already that they can’t build him into a star that needs to be.
No promoter on earth can likely turn Crawford into a star singlehandedly without him helping out by giving more interviews, posting on social media, doing live Instagram shows, and having something interesting to say.
You can argue that Crawford’s personality is on the dry side, and that’s putting it lightly.