Thurman Says There is Still Plenty in the Gas Tank
From the moment that former unified welterweight champion Keith “One Time” Thurman (29-1, 22 KO’s) hit the national consciousness, he has talked a good game. Luckily for boxing fans, One Time has always done well about backing that big talk up in the ring. To date, he only has one defeat at the hands of retired boxing sensation and eight-division champion Manny “Pac Man” Pacquiao. Who can really be mad at that?
Outside of his failed rumble with Pacquiao, Thurman has always walked away the victor. Among those triumphs, the skilled Floridian successfully claimed the scalps of Robert Guerrero, Luis Collazo, Danny Garcia and Shawn Porter, among others. He also secured the WBA welterweight title in 2015 and staged four successful title defenses over four years. Regrettably, even more than Pacquiao, the biggest detriment to One Time’s career has been injury. At this point, the former champion has lost years of his career to the scalpel and rehab.
Directly due to his medical woes, some have even brought into question whether Thurman would ever even try to reestablish himself as the top dog of the 147-pound division. There is a significant sect that believes One Time doesn’t have the stomach for it anymore and has checked out mentally. Yet, as Thurman explained to Fight Hub TV, he is more focused than ever before.
“I’m 33 now, I step into the ring with a little more wisdom, a little bit more knowledge. I’ve experienced many things; being hurt to the body, being hurt to the head, I’ve been through my first career loss. The only thing that’s never happened to me is Keith Thurman has never been knocked out!
So at the end of the day, I just have the desire to continuously go through this brutal sport of boxing and I want to push myself to the end…but my story is not over! The upside to the downside of inactivity is I haven’t beaten my body up and that’s why I have more. For those who question, ‘do I have more,’ Thurman didn’t beat his body up.”
PRESERVED OR POSTURING?
Thurman does raise the excellent point that he has sustained very little damage over the last number of years. Even in his actual fights, One Time has never truly been put through the meat grinder. Sure, he’s suffered his fair share of adversity and quality shots, but he’s never been mauled by anyone. Therefore, it is perfectly conceivable that the former champion could reestablish a measure of dominance in the division. How great a measure depends completely on Thurman.
On February 5, One Time has an excellent chance to make a grand statement against Mario Barrios. Honestly speaking though, if Thurman wants to launch a meaningful campaign for a title shot, he must look good in the Barrios collision. Presently, One Time is not listed among the top 15 in any of the four major sanctioning bodies’ rankings.
IBF and WBC welterweight champion Errol Spence Jr has oftentimes gleefully told Thurman to kick rocks. WBO 147-pound champion Terence Crawford has shown no great rush to hop in the ring with Thurman either. Therefore, it’s clear that the type of fight that One Time truly craves will not come falling out of the sky. He will have to earn it the hard way, coming from way behind. So, let’s see how much ground he can or can’t recover when in with Barrios.
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By: Jerrell Fletcher