OFFICIAL: Terence Crawford Faces Israil Madrimov for his WBA 154-lb Belt on Aug 3rd in LA

By Michael Collins - 04/24/2024 - Comments

Israil Madrimov will defend his WBA junior middleweight strap against the ambitious Terence Crawford on August 3rd in Los Angeles, California.

Fans unfamiliar with Madrimov (10-0-1, 7 KOs) view this as a mismatch in Crawford’s favor, but they could be in for a big surprise when this turns out to be the toughest fight of the 36-year-old Nebraska native’s career.

Crawford could lose for the first time in his 16-year career against the Matchroom-promoted Madrimov, which would spoil the plans for him to fight Jaron ‘Boots’ Ennis and Canelo Alvarez in mega-fights that His Excellency Turki Alalshikh is interested in putting together.

If Crawford loses to Madrimov, they’ll likely set up a quick rematch to try and salvage things for the former three-division world champion to see if he can still get the mega-fights against Boots and Canelo.

With Crawford, you just don’t know how he’ll react fighting a big puncher like Madrimov, because he’s not been active, fighting just three times in the last four years against these fighters:

Errol Spence: Post car crash
David Avanesyan
Shawn Porter: At the end of the road
Kell Brook: Same as above

The August 3rd undercard is arguably the best this year and loaded with fights that could be headliners on their own.

August 3rd Undercard

– Isaac ‘Pitbull’ Cruz vs. Jose ‘Rayo’ Valenzuela
– Vergil Ortiz Jr. vs. Tim Tszyu
– Andy Ruiz Jr. vs. Jarrell ‘Big Baby’ Miller
– David Morrell vs. Radivoje Kalajdzic
– Andy Cruz vs. Antonio Moran

You can make a strong argument that the Ortiz vs. Tszyu and Pitbull Cruz vs. Rayo Valenzuela fights are better match-ups than the main event between Crawford and Madrimov. I think either of those fights is more interesting for casual and hardcore boxing fans.

Crawford has never been a huge draw, and I don’t think his win over the depleted Spence Jr. has changed that. If it were up to me, I would put the fights in this order:

1. Isaac Cruz vs. Jose ‘Rayo’ Valenzuela: Main event
2. Vergil Ortiz Jr. vs. Tim Tszyu: Co-feature
3. Andy Ruiz Jr. vs. Jarrell ‘Big Baby’ Cruz
4. David Morrell vs. Radivoje Kalajdzic
5. Terence Crawford vs. Israil Madrimov
6. Andy Cruz vs. Antonio Moran

Crawford is an excellent fighter, but he’s not popular and his ability to attract interest in his fights is sorely lacking. If the idea is to get fans interested in the August 3rd card, Pitbull Cruz needs to be the main event.