Thurman says Spence fight not happening until 2019
By Sean Jones: Keith “One Time” Thurman says he won’t be fighting Errol Spence Jr. in a unification fight until at least 2019 at the earliest. Until then, Thurman (28-0, 22 KOs) says it’s not a subject that is discus-sable for him. He has other fights that he needs to take place in terms of his mandatory defense against Shawn Porter, and other fights.
Thurman says the fight with Spence will eventually happen someday in the future. Thurman points out that Floyd Mayweather Jr. had a lot of fighters that he didn’t fight until much later on, mentioning Manny Pacquiao and Shane Mosley as 2 examples. What Thurman doesn’t say is Mayweather didn’t fight Pacquiao and Mosley until they were clearly past their primes of their careers. Mayweather didn’t fight them when they were at their best. The same can be said about Mayweather’s fight with Saul Canelo Alvarez. He fought Canelo when he was just 22, and weakened from a catch-weight.
You can give Thurman, 28, credit for being open about him not being interested in fighting Errol Spence Jr. right now. Some fighters would make excuses for them not being willing to take that fight, but Thurman openly admits that he won’t be fighting Spence anytime soon. Thurman isn’t pretending that he wants to fight the 27-year-old Spence or saying that he still needs to prove himself, which was an excuse that he’d used before.
Thurman had also said that Spence needs to become a champion before he’ll fight him. Now that Spence has been a world champion since May of this year, Thurman still isn’t putting him on his list of opponents that he wants to fight.
“I haven’t been back yet,” said Thurman to Fighthype. “It’s on Hold,” said Thurman about the fight with Spence. “He’s not on my to do list. Shawn Porter is a mandatory with the WBC. Technically, it’s [Spence] on hold, and it’s not even in the near future. It’s not discussable. It’s not what’s on the plate right now. I’m not ready. It’s not that I’m not ready. I got things to do. I got to get back and then I got some obligations,” said Thurman.
The problem with Thurman putting off the Spence fight is the reality that he could get beaten before they ever fight. Thurman likes to name drop Mayweather’s name and put himself in the same light, but he’s clearly nowhere near as good as him. Thurman is barely beating Danny Garcia and Shawn Porter. Who can forget how Thurman was almost dropped by Luis Collazo recently, and staggered by Jesus Soto Karass.
Of course, Thurman is not ready to take the fight with Spence. He still has an elbow injury that he’s trying to come back from. But it’s troubling still that Thurman is saying he wants to put off the Spence fight until 2019. That almost sounds like he’s ducking the fight with the unbeaten Spence.
”19 is more realistic than 18,” said Thurman in saying that he’ll probably be fighting Spence in 2019 rather than next year. “I’m not saying it’s not going to happen. Shoot, look at all the fights Floyd Mayweather had in his career. They still ended up happening. We all know Manny Pacquiao, but what about Shane Mosley,” said Thurman.
Using Mayweather as an example of someone that veered around dangerous fighters until they were older isn’t a good excuse for not fighting Spence. Mayweather took a lot of heat from boxing fans for not fighting Mosley and Pacquiao while they were in their prime of their careers. It would be a shame if that’s what Thurman does as well.