Oscar De La Hoya says Errol Spence Jr made a mistake by not taking a tune-up fight before setting up a fight with Terence Crawford on July 29th.
Spence (28-0, 22 KOs) hasn’t fought since April of last year and will be coming off a fifteen-month layoff when he meets Crawford in July. IBF, WBA & WBC welterweight champion Spence says his long layoff was because he’s been trying to negotiate the fight with Crawford all this time.
De La Hoya says that this is the same mistake that Ryan Garcia made when he chose not to take a tune-up for his fight last April against Gervonta Davis. Ryan had been out of the ring for almost a year when he fought Tank, and he did not perform well.
Crawford (39-0, 30 KOs) had a recent tune-up against David Avanesyan last December, and he knocked him out in the sixth. Avanesyan wasn’t much of a tune-up, though, because he barely looked like a world-class fighter.
Even Crawford has been dealing with a lot of inactivity, fighting just once in 2020, 2021, and 2022. Both fighters have seen their careers slow to a crawl for whatever reason. Whether it’s the money they’ve accumulated or being too picky for their own good, waiting for the perfect fight.
“Finally, the best is fighting the best at welterweight, which makes me very happy,” said De La Hoya to Fighthpe about the Spence vs. Crawford fight.
“I do favor Crawford. Errol Spence was under Golden Boy for
many years and his one-dimensional style have been working for him until this day, but Crawford can dissect him slowly but surely.
“Crawford’s arsenal is much more extensive. He’s got versatility, and he’s got great footwork. That might be a little too much for Spence.
“Spence is coming out from a pretty long layoff, close to a year. That’s going to affect him, and Crawford just had a tune-up four months ago.
“From my experience, having long layoffs is not good for a fighter. Look at what happened with Ryan Garcia. He didn’t take a tune-up [for his fight against Gervonta Davis].
“Whenever I would fight somebody who didn’t have a tune-up
beforehand, I would beat easy and knock them out because your reflexes are the same. Your timing and punches are not there
“I think it’s going to make a big difference, I really do. I think fighters have to stay active
“I think that Crawford’s going to press the action, and Spence is not going to back down, so it should be a good fight,” said De La Hoya.