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Boots Ennis deserves title shot, will Crawford duck him?

Image: Boots Ennis deserves title shot, will Crawford duck him?

By Allan Fox: IBF welterweight mandatory Jaron ‘Boots’ Ennis deserves his title shot next, be it against champion Terence Crawford or the vacant belt if the Nebraska native chooses to duck the risky 50-50 fight against the much younger 26-year-old killer.

Crawford (40-0, 31 KOs) inherited the IBF mandatory responsibility of having to face ‘Boots’ Ennis when he beat IBF/WBA/WBC welterweight champion Errol Spence Jr last month.

So now Crawford has a big decision to make because he’s not going to be able to hold onto the IBF 147-lb title like it’s a precious keepsake for memories when he’s old & gray.

That title has to be defended, and it’s too much of a hot potato for Crawford due to the risky fight against a non-weight drained Boots Ennis; he’s got to give it up. Having just won the IBF strap, Crawford probably is reluctant to give it up because he needs that strap to be called the undisputed welterweight champion.

It doesn’t sound as good when a fighter is referred to as an ex-undisputed champion, but if Crawford doesn’t feel up to the job of facing Boots, he’ll have to vacate or have the IBF strip him.

Crawford hasn’t said what his plan C is if a rematch with Errol Spence or a fight against undisputed 154-lb champion Jermell Charlo doesn’t happen next.

Unless Crawford wants to sit inactive for the remainder of the year, his best option would be to fight Boots Ennis next if Spence elects not to take the rematch because Jermell is going to be busy with Canelo Alvarez.

Boots Ennis deserves title shot

“Being ready doesn’t always mean that you’re going to win,” said ‘Breadman’ Edwards to Fighthype when asked if Jaron ‘Boots’ Ennis is ready for Terence Crawford.

“It does mean that you are ready for your opportunity. I think ‘Boots’ deserves the opportunity. Somebody had to give Crawford an opportunity, and somebody had to give Errol an opportunity. I think he deserves the opportunity.”

If Crawford chooses to hold onto his IBF title and not fight Boots, we’ll see if the International Boxing Federation does the right thing and strips him. Will the IBF allow Crawford to swerve Boots while he fights Spence again, or if he moves up to 154 to fight? That would look bad if they allowed that to happen.

“Now, whether he gets one with one of those guys, I don’t know because usually, guys fight guys around their same age genre,” said Breadman. “They don’t usually fight guys that much younger than them. You rarely see that, especially a guy that talented, but this notion that he’s not ready is ridiculous.”

Well, if Crawford moves up to 154 to fight the 28-year-old Tim Tszyu for the WBO title, wouldn’t that be the same as him fighting Boots Ennis? We’re only talking about two years difference between the 26-year-old Boots & Tszyu. If Crawford is willing to fight Tszyu, why wouldn’t he be open to facing Boots? Is it fear of losing?

“He’s right at 26.  Crawford and Errol were about 26 and 27 when they got their title shot, and Boots had way more fights than they had when they got their title shot. So, of course, he’s ready. I’m not saying he can beat Terence,” said Breadman.

“What Terence just did the other night was just remarkable, but I think Boots deserves and has earned his title shot, whether it be with any of those guys or anybody else, but he deserves a shot.

“Terence & Boots? That’s 50-50. Just because that happened to Errol, that doesn’t mean that can happen to Boots, and as special as Terence was, you don’t know if he’s going to be that remarkable again. That was just like he was in the zone.

“That’s a monster performance, and the guys that we do see fight a perfect fight; you don’t see him fight them back to back to back to
back to back like that. That was a perfect fight, perfectly
executed,” said Edwards.

Breadman fails to mention the elephant in the room when talking about Crawford’s “monster performance” against Spence.

He should mention how Errol was weight drained to the point where he was roughly operating on 20% capacity and looked like a half-asleep zombie inside the ring the night of the fight.

“So it’s hard to do that back to back. Boots is a talented kid, and he’s ten years younger. If Terence doesn’t fight him, he’s more than earned his right to pick who he wants to fight at this point. The guy [Crawford] waited until he was 35 to get his first big Pay-Per-View fight, so he’s
definitely earned it,” said Breadman.

Is Crawford ducking Boots Ennis?

“I’m not saying he’s ducking Boots, but I don’t believe Terence Crawford is scared of anybody. Boots does deserve a shot at the title versus whoever it may be. Whatever they decide to do with the [IBF] belt, his shot is his shot.”

If you have to say that Crawford isn’t ducking Boots,  it must mean he is because it sure looks like it.

‘If it looks like a duck, swims like a duck, and quacks like a duck, then it probably a duck,’ and that fits Crawford to the tee.

‘Let’s see how he [Errol Spence] heals up. That was a tough beating, and I just want to be fair with the guy,” said Breadman when asked if Boots Ennis could beat Errol Spence.

“I like Errol a lot, and a lot of people are kicking him while he’s down, and it’s hard for me to assess how he’s going to look in the next fight after taking such a bad beating.  He got knocked down a few times.

“Obviously, it’s been reported that there have been some issues [with Spence]. I don’t want to perpetuate any rumors, but let me just see how he looks in the next couple of fights because who knows how he’s going to look when you come back.

“He took some tough shots, and he got knocked down.  His equilibrium got knocked off. So let’s see how he comes back before we can assess that,” said Edwards about Spence.

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