WBO welterweight champion Terence Crawford is already looking past his next title defense against Shawn Porter towards a fight against the winner of this month’s August 21st clash between IBF/WBC 147-lb champion Errol Spence Jr and Manny Pacquiao.
Crawford (37-0, 28 KOs) believes he can beat both of those guys, including Porter (31-3-1, 17 KOs), and he’s just got to wait for the bouts to happen.
Terence’s promoters at Top Rank are working with Porter’s management at PBC to finalize their fight for November.
That fight can’t happen soon enough for Crawford, as he’ll be facing the first elite-level opponent of his 13-year professional career.
This fight will help Crawford prove that he belongs at or near the top of the pound-for-pound lists.
Up to now, Crawford has received his high ranking based on wins over beatable opposition in the three divisions he’s competed in.
His best victories have come against fighters like Yuriorkis Gamboa, Viktor Postol, and Kell Brook. In each of those fights, Crawford took punishment and looked vulnerable at times.
“I really can’t say because the fight with Porter isn’t set in stone yet. I’m still trying to figure out details,” said Terence Crawford to Bart & Hahn when asked if he wants to fight the winner of the Manny Pacquiao vs. Errol Spence fight.
“But yeah, the idea is to go after the winner of Pacquiao and Spence. I actually don’t believe that,” said Crawford when asked if Spence got the fight with Pacquiao because he can fill up huge stadiums like AT&T in Arlington, Texas.
If Pacquiao beats Spence on August 21st, it could complicate matters for Crawford because there will likely be a rematch. Even if Spence beats Pacquiao, there could be a second fight, particularly if it brings in many pay-per-view buys.
Crawford has got to stay busy and continue fighting quality opposition should he get past Porter. Top Rank promoter Bob Arum has talked of wanting to match Crawford against undisputed light welterweight champion Josh Taylor in the first quarter of 2022.
That would be an excellent fight for Crawford to continue to build his credentials while he waits to see if Spence and Crawford fight a rematch.
“I think that’s an understatement. I think that if I was fighting the same caliber of a fighter like Mikey Garcia, I feel like I’ll fill up a stadium too, being that Mikey Garcia is a very big draw in Texas,” said Crawford.
It’s doubtful that Crawford vs. Mikey Garcia would have brought the same size crowd in Texas as the Spence-Mikey fight in 2019. Crawford isn’t from Texas, he’s from Nebraska, and Mikey is from California.
We’ll never know if Crawford could have filled a stadium for a fight against Mikey in Texas because those two never fought, and they likely never will.
“Yeah, not to take anything from Errol Spence. I feel that Mikey Garcia pulled in more supporters than he did,” said Crawford.
We don’t know if Mikey pulled in more fans than Spence did for their fight in Arlington, Texas, in 2019. But given that Spence vs. Danny Garcia pulled in the same numbers in Arlington, you would have to say that the fans that showed up for the Mikey fight were mostly Errol’s.
Danny Garcia has Puerto Rican roots and is from Philadelphia. You can’t attribute the huge crowd that showed up for their fight last December was due to Danny’s popularity.
“I’m just waiting for PBC and Top Rank to sort out whatever they have to sort out,” said Crawford on the negotiations for his fight with Porter.
“If not, it goes to a purse bid, and after that, it’s game on,” said Crawford about him waiting for his WBO-ordered fight against Shawn Porter to be negotiated. “I’m just sitting and relaxing and waiting for this fight to get finalized,” said Crawford.
It’ll be good to see the Crawford vs. Porter fight finalized because many boxing fans still believe it won’t happen. Crawford’s promoters at Top Rank didn’t seem eager to set up a fight between him and Porter before the WBO ordered it.
Now that they have no choice, you just wonder whether they will or not. It’s a difficult match-up on paper for Crawford because Porter is an inside brawler who will take away his counter punching and jabbing ability. If this becomes an inside war, Crawford will have to show skills that he’s never used before.
“It’s never no bad blood. As I stated, I support Errol Spence,” said Crawford about him not having any bitterness towards Spence.
“I’ve been watching him since he was in the Olympics, and he was an amateur. I don’t have any bad blood.
“I just don’t like a lot of things he does and say. At the same time, it’s the fight game. As competitive as I am, I just know in my heart that I can beat him,” said Crawford about Spence.
Crawford needs to take one step at a time and not look past his fight with Porter because if he takes his eyes off the prize, he could lose, and then he’ll never fight Spence.
“I think the fighters have to take over the game,” said Crawford when asked how the boxers can make sure the best fights are getting made.
“The promoters like to fight in-house because they get a 100% of the revenue, and a lot of promoters don’t want to share with another promoter if they don’t have to.
“I feel like the fighters have to basically demand these types of fights. Whether the promoter, adviser or manager feels it’s a great fight or likes it or not, the fighters got to want to fight the best,” Crawford said.
“Of course, it’s frustrating, but this is something I’ve been dealing with it for a long time,” said Crawford.
“So I kind of know how to deal with it and not let it get to me to where it distracts me from my training and what I’m trying to accomplish,” said Crawford in discussing his thoughts about his inability to get the big fights that he’s wanted his entire career.
“I just keep my head down and keep moving forward,” said Crawford.