Terence Crawford: Spence vs. Garcia = 50-50 fight
By Chris Williams: Terence Crawford views this Saturday’s fight between Danny Garcia and Errol Spence Jr as a 50-50 affair that he believes could either way.
Spence (26-0, 21 KOs) and Garcia (36-2, 21 KOs) will be fighting on Fox Sports PPV at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas. It’s a good fight, but it’s slightly on the high side at $74.99.
At that price, if the diehard boxing fans purchase it, as usual, it’ll help make up the difference from all the fans that choose not to buy it.
What’s unclear is whether Crawford truly sees the Spence vs. Garcia fight as a 50-50 match-up or if he’s saying it because he’s bitter about boxing fans viewing Errol as the #1 fighter at 147 rather than him.
Could it be that or Crawford is unhappy that he’s been unable to fight Spence? The fight likely would have happened between them ages ago if Crawford didn’t keep re-upping with Top Rank each time his contract expires.
Crawford says he initially saw the Spence-Garcia fight as 60-40 in Errol’s favor, but he’s now changed his mind and views it as a toss-up.
WBO welterweight champion Terence (37-0, 28 KOs) says he knows Danny well, and he notes that he does well when his back is against the wall.
Of course, Danny doesn’t always do well when his back is against the wall, as he lost to Keith Thurman and Shawn Porter.
Terence says Spence-Garcia is 50-50 fight
“I say it’s a 50/50 fight,” Crawford said of the Spence vs. Danny Garcia bout on Saturday.
“It was a 40/60 in Spence favor, but the more and more I think with my head, and just think back to the Danny Garcia that I know, when he’s motivated, and he feels like his back is against the wall and got something to prove, he always rose to the occasion,” said Crawford.
A better reason why the Spence-Garcia fight is a 50-50 match is the car accident that Spence was involved in last year.
Crawford should have mentioned that right away as to why he viewed the fight as 50-50 rather than bringing up how tough Danny is. Shawn Porter was tough, but he still lost to Spence last year.
Porter beat Danny in 2018 by a 12 round decision, which is important to factor in.
We’ll see what Crawford has to say if Spence deals Danny (36-2. 21 KOs) his third defeat this Saturday night at the AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas. The question is, will Crawford give Spence credit, or will he criticize his win?
Crawford wants Spence
“When we talking about the number one guy in the division, we gotta be talking about Terence Crawford,” said Crawford.
“I really want Spence, just to shut everybody up and see what they going to say after that.
“I know it’s going to be a lot of excuses and bandwagon shifting; it’s going to be wild,” said Crawford in dreaming of a win over Spence.
“We in the same division; it’s business. He thinks he #1; I think I’m #1. Somebody has got to be #1,” said Crawford.
It would help if Crawford backed down from his 60-40 stance to take the lion’s share for a fight with Spence.
With the way Spence is talking, he’s not going to agree to a 50-50 split either, and he’s likely going to insist on getting the bigger cut.
Crawford’s chances of getting a fight with Spence could hinge on how well his fight against Danny Garcia does on Fox Sports PPV this Saturday. If they bring in a lot of buys, there’s no way that Spence will be agreeable to giving Crawford a 50-50 deal.
Spence has already proven himself as a PPV fighter with his matches against Mikey Garcia and Shawn Porter. If the fight with Danny does well, it’ll be bad news for Crawford.
When Crawford did PPV in his fights with Amir Khan and Viktor Postol, they failed to bring in many buys.
Mannix: Crawford lacks accomplishments to be pound-for-pound #1
“Let me tell you my thoughts on Terence Crawford, then I’d like to hear you tell me if I’m exciting in this kind of bubble where incentive shaped behavior,” said Max Kellerman.
“ESPN is here, and Top Rank is here or whether what you see is what I see. I think Terence Crawford is a complete package as a fighter. He is less proven at 147 than in any other weight classes, but that’s not his fault.
“It’s a different promoter, and it’s difficult to get guys to cross the street to fight him.
“Against Kell Brook, I saw a guy that has evolved from a slick boxing lightweight champion once upon a time to a power-punching welterweight. Though it’s hard to tell how much Kell Brook has left after those devastating losses to Golovkin and Errol Spence.”
“I see arguably the most skilled fighter in all of boxing, but not someone that quite frankly can even be considered the top pound-for-pound guy because of the lack of accomplishments,” Chris Mannix said of Crawford.
“If you want to put it in the context of a different sport, the Lakers aren’t the best team in the NBA because their roster is the best on paper.
“The Lakers are the best team in the NBA because they beat Portland, Houston, Denver, and Miami, and they accomplished something.
“Terence Crawford, I look at as potentially the best fighter in boxing, but he’s nowhere near as accomplished as the guys in this discussion. Most notably, Canelo Alvarez.
“I don’t think there should be any debate over who the top fighter is in boxing. Canelo Alvarez, at 154, fought and beat the best.
“And at 160, he fought and beat, at least once, the best in Gennadiy Golovkin. At 175, we can argue that Sergey Kovalev isn’t the best fighter he was fighting on HBO, but he was still a titleholder and a big puncher.
“Canelo moved up and knocked him out. So to me, a resume is all that matters when you make pound-for-pound lists.”
Max Kellerman is with ESPN, which is the same company that televises Crawford’s fights. Would it be in Kellerman’s best interest to criticize Crawford?
Chris Mannix brings up a good point about Crawford not having accomplished enough to be rated as the #1 pound-for-pound fighter in boxing.
Crawford hasn’t done enough to be given that spot unless we lowered the bar in picking the top pound-for-pound fighters.
Crawford’s wins since moving up to 147:
- Kell Brook
- Amir Khan
- Jose Benavidez Jr
- Jeff Horn
- Egidijus Kavaliauskas
Crawford has captured world titles in 3 divisions
“Okay, you and I have very different feelings about the resume,” said Kellerman. “I think when you’re ranking fighters, you have to have in order to establish a title shot, and a resume is everything.
“It’s got to be meritocratic. But when it comes to pound-for-pound, it’s subjective; it’s our opinion. To me, you look at everybody, you look at the landscape, and you say, ‘I think that guy is the most effective operator in his weight class, right?’
“Now I think that’s Crawford. Now what you just said about Canelo, Crawford did that at 135, he did it at 140, and now he’s at 147, where he’s been locked out of the opportunity.
“But along the way, he hasn’t had any close calls as Canelo had against Erislandy Lara; it could have gone either way, Austin Trout, it was very close.
“Gennadiy Golovkin, a better fighter obviously than Crawford has fought, but they were close competitive fights.
“So I like Crawford there, but I understand there’s a difference in philosophy. What do you think about how Crawford looked against Kell Brook?”
“Crawford can punch, and he can hit with both hands, but I do think that was more about what Kell Brook is than something Terence Crawford continues to evolve to be,” said Mannix.
“One thing we know about fighters and weight is if you struggle to make weight, your punch resistance goes down. When you get older, your punch resistance goes down.
“It was three years ago that Kell Brook vowed to never fight at 147 again. He was done with the 147-pound division. I give him all the credit in the world for making the weight.
“That was disciplined. He made the weight clean, and the fight was one. But I think he had to take himself to task to get down to 147 pounds. So how that fight played out didn’t surprise me one bit.
“It happened a little bit earlier than I thought it would happen, but I expected Terence Crawford to knock out Kell Brook spectacularly, and that’s exactly what he did.”
Crawford has indeed won world titles in three divisions, but the fighters he beat to win those belts were nothing special. Also, the guys that Crawford defended those belts against were less the best.
Arum will try to make Spence vs. Crawford in 2021
“Crawford’s future, because people are talking about Pacquiao, Spence, and that wishful thinking,” said Kellerman. “His contract with Top Rank, Bob Arum, recently made comments about he’s losing money, and also Canelo’s future. Let’s start with Crawford quickly. What do you see?”
“I think with Crawford, they [Top Rank] are going to try as hard as they can to make the Spence fight in the first quarter of 2021.
“There’s really no excuse for it not to happen. There isn’t a logical opponent for Spence on his side of the street.
“Keith Thurman isn’t someone that he’s interested in. Nobody really cares right now about a Shawn Porter rematch. So the time is now [for Spence vs. Crawford].
“If that fight can’t be made, I do see a productive 2021. Crawford could move up to 154 pounds and fight Patrick Teixeira in his next fight.
“That would be a feather in his cap, and if he did that, he could fight the winner perhaps of Josh Taylor against Jose Ramirez, which would be a really intriguing fight in the second half of 2021.
“So even without Spence, I could see a really productive year for Crawford. As far as Canelo goes, Eddie Hearn pulled a rabbit out of his hat in the last couple of days.
“Getting Canelo to sign on to fight Callum Smith, who I think the best 168-pounder in boxing right now, that is a coup for Eddie Hearn and a coup for DAZN to get Canelo back in the mix.
“Because Eddie is linked to Gennadiy Golovkin, I think there’s a very strong possibility, and perhaps a likelihood that in May 2021, we see Canelo-Golovkin III.”
Top Rank boss Bob Arum has got to try his best to put together the Spence vs. Crawford fight next year because Terence’s contract with his company will be expiring in October.
As for Mannix’s idea of Crawford moving up to 154 to face Patrick Teixeira, that’s not going to happen. Crawford will likely stay at 147 for the remainder of his career and try to get with the PBC guys for as long as he can.
There’s going to come a time in the not too distant future whether it won’t be worth it for Crawford to try and fight the PBC guys, as they’re all getting older. Porter, Danny Garcia, and Manny Pacquiao only have a little while left before they’re over-the-hill.
- Thurman tells Spence: ‘I’m better than anyone you ever fought, let’s fight’
- Teddy Atlas predicts Crawford will retire Pacquiao
- Jermell Charlo vs. Brian Castano on July 3 or 10th, Spence vs. Ugas on card
- Jaron ‘Boots’ Ennis ready for Spence and Crawford if they call