Bob Arum spoke to Spence and Haymon, says Spence-Crawford happens in 2020
By Dan Ambrose: Bob Arum says he’s already had conversations with Errol Spence Jr. and his adviser Al Haymon about a unification match with Terence Crawford for 2020. Arum says after speaking with Spence and Haymon, he believes the Spence-Crawford fight will take place next year. ESPN and Fox won’t get in the way of the Spence vs. Crawford fight from taking place, according to Arum. He says they work with each other, and won’t be a problem.
Arum is predicting that IBF welterweight champion Spence (25-0, 21 KOs) will beat WBC belt holder Shawn Porter (30-2-1, 17 KOs) on September 28. Spence won’t get the fight against Manny Pacquiao, because the Filipino star would lose, says Arum. He feels that the only fight out there for Spence is a unification match against the unbeaten WBO 147-lb champion Crawford (35-0, 26 KOs).
Spence wants to be the A-side for Crawford fight
For the Spence-Crawford fight to take place, Crawford and Arum will likely need to let Spence be the A-side, and get bigger purse split. Crawford and Arum want a 50-50 deal for a Spence fight, and that does not seem like it’s realistic. Spence feels he should be the A-side, and he’s not going to change that stance if he beats Porter.
Arum: Spence vs. Crawford will take place next year
“Remember, there are a lot of great welterweights coming up,” said Arum to Fighthype about Crawford having options for good opponents. “There will be plenty of activity for Terence,” said Arum when asked if Crawford won’t have anyone to fight. “I really believe having talked to Spence, and talked to Al Haymon, after each of them have a fight this year, Spence with [Shawn] Porter, and Crawford with [Egidijus] Kavaliauskas, that next year we’ll do that fight. It’s a big money fight,” said Arum.
It’s unclear what the contract situation is with Crawford, 31, and Top Rank. If Crawford’s contract with Top Rank is expiring at the end of 2020, then it makes sense for Arum to match him against Spence as soon as he can. He’s got to have at least one-mega fight for him. Thus far, Arum hasn’t been able to deliver any huge fights for Crawford. That’s hard to ignore, especially with Crawford now past 30. The Nebraska native isn’t getting any younger, and if he re-ups for 3 to 4 years with Top Rank, that could take him to the end of his prime.
Arum will be in a dire situation if Crawford’s contract expires next year, and he hasn’t made any progress with the Spence fight. The temptation for Crawford to sign with Premier Boxing Champions or Matchroom DAZN will be high, because he’ll be able to get the mouth-watering fights that he wants.
Arum doesn’t see the networks getting in the way of making Spence-Crawford fight
“First of all, the Spence-Porter fight is one way, and that’s Spence,” said Arum. “Manny [Pacquiao] won’t fight Spence. He’d really hurt him. Spence then has to get a big fight, and the big fight would be against Crawford. Now the networks aren’t a problem, because Spence is being supported by FOX, and ESPN has Crawford. The whole history in sports with Fox and ESPN working together in cooperation on events.
That’s why the Wilder-Fury fight is easy, and comes together, because Fox and ESPN know how to work together. They’re big boys. They’re not like with the premium networks like HBO and Showtime were just not working with each other. It doesn’t work that way with the big networks in the United States,” said Arum.