Arum on Crawford v Spence: “I’ll Be Talking to Al About It”

Bob Arum: We Can Make it for 2020

(Clockwise) Bob Arum, Terence Crawford, Errol Spence Jr
(Clockwise) Bob Arum, Terence Crawford, Errol Spence Jr

Bob Arum: We Can Make it for 2020

Ever since the former undisputed junior welterweight champion Terence “Bud” Crawford (36-0, 27 KO’s) moved up to welterweight, boxing fans have clamored for him to fight WBC and IBF world welterweight champion Errol “The Truth” Spence Jr (26-0, 21 KO’s). Initially, Spence told Bud to get a belt if he wanted that work. As a result Crawford, went out, roughed up Jeff Horn and strong armed him for his WBO strap. Nevertheless, the fight still went unrealized.

Starting prior to 2019, both sides have accused the other of the being the problem. This is not really surprising considering the extremely rocky and adversarial relationship that Top Rank and the PBC have shared.

What is surprising is to hear Top Rank top dog Bob Arum, in an exclusive interview conducted with Blue Blood Sport TV, sound as if the two boxers wanting to fight is brand new news. His proclaimed unawareness that Spence and Crawford wanted to face one another until now is puzzling to say the least.

“Until I know that both fighters wanted the fight, which now appears to be the case, I wasn’t going to do anything. Because what, is Al [Haymon] going to force Spence into doing the fight? I knew Terence wanted the fight, but now that Errol indicates that he wants to fight then by all means. While we’re involved in the promotion of the biggest fight in years, Wilder/Fury, I’ll be talking to Al about it.”


Ever since WBA regular world lightweight champion Gervonta “Tank” Davis (23-0, 22 KO’s) fought Yuriorkis Gamboa on December 28, the potential Crawford v Spence Jr bout took a turn in a positive direction.

Following Davis’s twelfth round knockout, Crawford has become a near constant fixture on Twitter. This is a rather curious anomaly. It is odd because, up to this point, Bud has maintained a reputation of being somewhat standoffish and even reclusive when it came to dealing with the media and his fans.

Yet, he got to woofing so tough online that it allegedly lead to Spence and Crawford hashing out some critical details with one another over the phone. After getting wind of these back and forth tweets and phone conversation, Arum says that now that he is aware that both fighters want that action, he can go ahead and try to negotiate the bout.

“I heard about that. I think it’s good because it indicates now that both guys want to do the fight and then it’s up to the promoters to come to terms and put it together. So now, you know, I would go ahead and talk to Al [Haymon] about the fight. In negotiating for Wilder and Fury, that issue came up. Al assured me that we would do the fight, at least from his point, in 2020. Which we’re at now, but that was before the accident.”


Of course, it’s extremely far-fetched that Arum was completely in the dark about the two wanting to compete. This has literally remained one of the biggest stories in the sport for well over a year. Not only this, prior to the current situation, Spence Jr. and Crawford have come face to face more than once in videos that went very viral.

Yet, what can you expect from a guy who is famous for saying, ‘yesterday I was lying but today I am telling the truth”?! Putting all posturing, denials and political maneuvering to the side, let’s just hope that now this fight can achieve some realistic traction going forward. The boxing world definitely wants the prizefight, so let’s keep those fingers crossed!

By: Bakari Simpson

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