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Keith Thurman vs. Marios = Done deal for January 29th

Keith Thurman boxing photo

By Sean Jones: Keith ‘One Time’ Thurman will be resuming his once-promising career next month against the recently knocked out former WBA secondary 140-lb champion Mario Barrios on January 29th.

Mike Coppinger is reporting the news for the Thurman vs. Barrios fight having been agreed on for January 29th. ‘El Azteca’ Barrios, 26, is coming off an 11th round knockout loss to Gervonta ‘Tank’ Davis last summer on June 26th in a fight on Showtime PPV in Atlanta.

The Barrios we saw in that fight might be too young, active, and sharp for what’s left of ‘One Time’ Thurman. In his prime, Thurman was an excellent fighter, but he’s been plagued by injuries since 2016, and the success that he’s enjoyed has kept him out of the ring.

Unlike hungry fighters that needed to stay active to make money, Thurman has done well financially, making it less of a need to get back to work like ordinary folk.

This is a risky fight for Thurman because he’s looked like the shell of his former self since his war with Danny Garcia in 2017.

Does Thurman have anything left?

In Thurman’s only two fights in the last four years, he looked terrible against fringe contender Josesito Lopez in 2019, coming close to getting knocked out, and then losing to 40-year-old Manny Pacquiao in July 2019.

Keith Thurman boxing photo

Since losing to Pacquiao, Thurman has been licking his wounds from the fight, enjoying family life, and eating well.

Recently, Thurman has taken off a lot of weight to get ready for his comeback, but it’s still difficult to predict what he has left.

Barrios was giving Tank many problems through the first half of the fight before the Baltimore native’s promoter Floyd Mayweather Jr. lit a fire under his backside after the seventh, letting him know that the situation was desperate.

Tank then came on strong to drop Barrios twice in the eighth round, and it was smooth sailing from that point.

The 33-year-old Thurman (29-1, 22 KOs) is finally getting back in action after a nearly three-year rest since his last fight against Manny Pacquiao in July 2019.

Assuming Thurman wins this fight against Barrios (26-1, 17 KOs), he could be facing WBO welterweight champion Terence ‘Bud’ Crawford next summer.

Crawford (38-0, 29 KOs) is ready to give Thurman a title shot right now, but ‘One Time’ wants to get a warm-up bout out of the way before challenging the Nebraska native for his WBO strap.

Keith must beat Barrios to get Crawford fight

Thurman hardly deserves a title shot against Crawford after three years out of the ring, but he’ll get one anyway just based on his popularity.

Ideally, Thurman should have to defeat one of the highly ranked contenders like Jaron Ennis or Vergil Ortiz Jr. for him to earn a title shot against Crawford, but he won’t have to.

He’ll be given a title shot as long as he beats Barrios, and it’s not a given that he’ll accomplish that task.

The younger boxing fans aren’t familiar with Thurman because he’s been relevant for many years. Nowadays, Thurman is known more for his YouTube interviews than his competition. He’s still a great talker, but he hasn’t backed up his tough talk for ages.

The last victory over a quality opponent for Thurman was back in 2017 when he defeated Danny Garcia in March 2017. Still, unfortunately, that fight signaled the beginning of the end for One Time being an active fighter.

“Sources: Keith Thurman and Mario Barrios have struck a deal for a welterweight fight on Jan. 29. Thurman’s first fight since July 2019 loss to Manny Pacquaio. Barrios climbs to 147 pounds after TKO loss to Gervonta Davis. Really good PBC matchup,” said @MikeCoppinger.

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