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Crawford vs Spence Makes Sense Now


PhilBoxing.com





For 5 years the boxing community has been talking about a possible fight between WBO welterweight champion Terrence Crawford (38-0, 29KOs) and unified welterweight champion (WBA/WBC/IBF) champion Errol Spence (28-0, 22KOs). Talk of a fight between the two started while Crawford was still the undisputed first ever 4 belt (WBA/WBC/WBO/IBF) junior welterweight champion (140lbs).

Back then when Errol Spence was asked about a potential fight between him and Crawford, he responded in order for a match to happen Crawford would have to win a “belt” (a welterweight championship). Crawford did in fact do that in 2018 when he defeated Jeff Horn. At that time Spence had only captured one welterweight title (IBF) and would eventually unify 3 of the 4 major titles in the welterweight division as of April 2022 by defeating Yordenis Ugas for the WBA title.

A fight between Spence and Crawford not coming to fruition was largely blamed on both fighters being promoted by different promoters. Spence is promoted by Premier Boxing Champions (PBC) and Crawford’s was formerly promoted by Top Rank (TR). Crawford’s promotional agreement ended last November 2021 after his last fight when he defeated former two time welterweight champion Shawn Porter. Crawford has been free to sign with ANY Promoter for a long term deal or short term (1 fight deal) if he so chooses. The excuse that PBS and TR weren’t willing to work together to make this fight happen no longer exist.

Since April 16, 2022 when Spence defeated Ugas, almost 5 months ago, the boxing world had been eagerly anticipating the announcement of Crawford vs Spence. Various news outlets have been reporting that the fight is close to being signed and will take place in either early or mid-November 2022. Most fight fans had hoped for the fight in August, but much to their dismay it didn’t happen. As of the writing of this article, nothing official has been announced by PBC, the likely Promoter of a proposed Crawford-Spence fight. TV executives have said, in regards to the fight, they are confident that it will get signed but there is still skepticism by fight Fans and Boxing Writers that the fight may NOT be signed. Why? Reports are that one fighter wants financial parity. In other words a “50-50 deal” of the revenue the fight will generate. In other words one fighter wants half of everything down the middle and the other doesn’t agree. Reports are also that both fighters want astronomical fight purses, which may be unreasonable considering streaming piracy and the rising cost of inflation. Astronomical purses meaning “Mayweather-Pacquiao” type money as a TV executive responded when interviewed. Reports are that these are the MAJOR ISSUES as to why the fight has not been announced or signed thus far.

If reports are accurate, who can blame either Crawford or Spence for trying to get as much money as they possible can for themselves, their families, trainers, and everyone else involved in their careers up until this point? There’s a lot of money to be made in a Crawford-Spence fight! This writer envisions the winner of Crawford-Spence becoming another face of boxing much like Canelo Alvarez and the victor being offered a nice 5 fight $100,000,000 contract especially if the victor looks impressive in winning he fight.

Remember Leonard vs Hearns I and Hagler vs Hearns? Those fights made and kept all three fighters in the mainstream. Mainstream meaning, people who normally didn’t watch boxing would pay to watch the “Big Fight” and then go back to their sports of choice (i.e. Baseball, Football, Basketball, Hockey, etc.). However, ample time has passed where an agreement for Crawford vs Spence should have been reached and sooner than later, either these financial issues get resolved or else those involved in trying to sign the fight will have to simply move on. What is the alternative for Both Crawford and Spence if a fight between the two doesn’t get signed?

Crawford has said if a fight doesn’t get signed between him and Crawford he will move up from 147lbs to 154lbs to fight 4 belt undisputed champion (WBC/ WBA/ WBO/ IBF) Jermell Charlo. Charlo is scheduled to fight Tim Tszyu in January 2023 who is his mandatory defense for his WBO 154lbs belt. The mandatory contender is the number #1 fighter whom the champion (Charlo) must fight. It is NOT an optional defense as Crawford would be if Charlo decided to fight him because Crawford, as of the writing of this article, is not ranked by either boxing sanctioning bodies (WBC/ WBA/ WBO/ IBF) at 154lbs. Jermell also has mandatories for the WBC (Sebastian Fundora), WBA (Israil Madrimov), and IBF (Bakhram Murtazaliev) who have been waiting for their title opportunity for quite some time. Charlo has to first defeat Tszyu. If Charlo defeats Tszyu are the other mandatory fighters willing to continue waiting While Crawford Challenges Charlo? Finally, Charlo is promoted by PBC. If Charlo couldn’t reach an agreement to fight Spence with PBC, how can Crawford possibly reach an agreement with PBC for Charlo?

Crawford could challenge any of the sanctioning body mandatories for an eventual title shot. Another alternative would be for Crawford to remain at 147lbs and defend his WBO belt against mandatory contender Vergil Ortiz Jr. who is ready and willing to fight Crawford. The question is will Crawford receive the same amount of money that he would receive from a fight with Ortiz or a mandatory contender at 154lbs that he would receive had he fought Spence?

What are Spence’s options for no fight with Crawford? Likely, Spence faces the same scenario if Charlo defeats Tszyu. If Spence opts to stay at 147lbs as a unified champion (WBC/ WBA/IBF) he has 3 mandatories contenders as well. There is an undefeated fighter named Jaron “Boots” Ennis (29-0, 27KOs, 1 NC) who has challenged both Spence and Crawford. Boots is from Philadelphia and his boxing record speaks for itself. He’s big, has punching power, and has skill. This guy can fight! Boots has challenged both Spence and Crawford. Showtime has reportedly signed “Boots” to a 3 fight deal. The question can also be asked will Spence receive the same amount of money that he would receive from a fight with Boots or a mandatory contender at 154lbs that he would have had he fought Crawford?

Those who understand boxing now the answer to that question for both Crawford and Spence. Therefore, because, at this point, the most amount of money that both Crawford and Spence can make is to fight each other both camps should find a way to REASONABLY come to an agreement before the “Powers That Be” decide that making this fight is not possible and walk away from the negotiating table. No other fight will reward them like fighting each other at this point which is why Crawford vs Spence make sense now.

Boxing Notes
In boxing a good big man generally will defeat a smaller good man. Why? The big man will use his size advantage which means his jab, height, and power. Isn’t that what Anthony Joshua did in the rematch he won against Andy Ruiz? Why didn’t Joshua do that in the Oleksandr Usyk rematch? Had Joshua done that right now the boxing world likely would be talking about Fury vs Joshua or even revisiting a Joshua vs Wilder fight…The world wanted to see Joshua vs Wilder when both were undefeated fight in the UK. Maybe Joshua and Wilder could have split $100,000,000. If both fighters can win their next fights their will likely be too much money involved that it will make financial sense for the two to fight..All the best to 4 division champion Adrian Broner as he fights mental health issues. Broner’s last scheduled fight was against former champion Omar Figueroa. Figueroa who was a shell of his former self lost to late replacement former 140lbs champion Sergey Lipinets by 8th round stoppage. Figueroa then announced his retirement. It likely would have been an easy win for Broner if he were able to fight Figueroa. Hopefully Broner recovers from his mental health issues and does well in life.
Contact Writer: RLuvsboxing@aol.com


***Ralph Rimpell is a writer based out of New York and is a Boxing Correspondent for Philboxing.com. Ralph holds an undergraduate degree from City University of New York. He has been a Boxing Writer for over ten years having written for several top boxing websites on the World Wide Web. Before becoming a writer, Ralph's passion was for professional wrestling until he realized professional wrestling was entertainment and not a real sport. It was at that time the 1984 US Olympic team made up of future stars such as Evander Holyfield, Meldrick Taylor, Pernell Whitaker, etc. entered the professional ranks and signed with promotional outfit Main Events.It was also at that time a young exciting Heavyweight originally hailing from Brooklyn named Mike Tyson also turned professional and became the face of boxing. Young boxing fan Ralph just couldn't get enough of boxing as a large part of it was being broadcast on "free TV". As time went on, Ralph felt boxing writers were not being forthcoming with their boxing coverage, opinion pieces, interviews, etc. So Ralph decided to write an article and submitted it to a Boxing website thinking it would be deleted and ignored by the Editor. To Ralph's surprise his article was posted on their website and the readers embraced it. The rest is history.

"I thank God for the Internet because it has created opportunities for writers like myself who likely would not have been given an opportunity to write for print publications. I hope someday soon to expand my role in Boxing on different levels." -- Ralph Rimpell



Click here to view a list of other articles written by Ralph Rimpell.


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