By Huck Allen: Keith ‘One Time’ Thurman says he’ll be ready to take on Terence Crawford eight months from now in the summer of 2022 for his WBO welterweight title. Crawford needs a high-profile opponent for his next fight, and Thurman, 32, would be the ideal candidate for the job.
Last Saturday night, Crawford put in a masterclass performance in defeating former IBF/WBC welterweight champion ‘Showtime’ Shawn Porter by a tenth round knockout in the main event on ESPN+ PPV at the Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino in Las Vegas.
The only problem with the Crawford-Porter fight was the lack of interest from boxing fans. With Porter lacking in his ability to promote the fight, it put the heavy burden on the shoulders of Crawford and his promoter Bob Arum to attract attention to the battle.
What’s excellent about Thurman is his ability to take over the promotion for a fight and become a one-person promotional team. Thurman can singlehandedly create buzz for a fight with Crawford without him needing to lift a finger.
“I’m going to be getting back in the ring shortly; I’d be more than happy, more than willing, to step in the ring with Bud Crawford next summer. I’m willing to fight Crawford eight months from now,” said Thurman to The Athletic.
Crawford (38-0, 28 KOs) said last week that he’d like to face the former WBA/WBC welterweight champion Thurman (29-1, 22 KOs) because of the things he did in the past when he was viewed as the #1 fighter at 147.
Thurman has had some injury problems that have kept him on the shelf since his 12 round split decision loss to Manny Pacquiao on July 20th, 2019.
Three years is a long time for a fighter to be out of the ring, but if Muhammad Ali could come back and fight at a high level after that amount of time being inactive in the 1960s, Thurman could do that as well.
‘One Time’ Thurman probably would have returned to the ring by now if he hadn’t invested so much time into getting a rematch with Pacquiao. That’s the fight that Thurman has been holding out for all this time, and it’s understandable why.
Thurman made a lot of money in his fight with Pacquiao, which he did most of the hard work promoting, and he wanted a second crack because he felt he could have won that match if he hadn’t made a couple of mistakes.
Crawford’s promoter Bob Arum of Top Rank, says he’s interested in matching him against Errol Spence Jr. or Josh Taylor next. It’s unclear whether Arum will perk up interest in making a fight between Crawford and Thurman, though.
Last Saturday night, Arum talked of wanting to make a fight between Crawford and undisputed light welterweight champion Taylor (18-0, 13 KOs) next if Spence isn’t interested in facing Terence.
Arum predicts that Spence vs. Taylor will pull in in 1.5 million PPV buys and sell out a 70,000 stadium fight in the UK.