Terence Crawford and Dierry Jean are just two days away from Saturday night's HBO main event from Omaha's CenturyLink Center, and today the fighters and their teams met up for a surprisingly memorable press conference that included no shoving or yelling, but a lot of banter.
Top Rank promoter Bob Arum stole the show, weaving impersonations of Presidential candidates Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump into his introductions of Mikael Zewski and Andy Ruiz Jr, who will fight in non-televised undercard bouts on the show. Arum also deftly worked in a story about newly-elected Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Trudeau's father Pierre, managing to take a mild shot at the looks of Barbra Streisand, who once dated the senior Trudeau.
Jean (29-1, 20 KO) kept it brief on the podium, following an introduction from Eye of the Tiger Management's Camille Estephan, who noted that Jean received word that his brother had passed away in Haiti last month, during Dierry's training camp for this fight.
Earlier in the presser, Jean's trainer said that they weren't just coming to Omaha to say they fought for a world title, and that Crawford (26-0, 18 KO) was their "ticket to greatness," and to going to the bank and coming out smiling. When he got to the microphone, Jean turned to Crawford and said, "No disrespect, but I'm gonna beat your ass, man," delivering the statement with a smile and drawing laughs from Crawford, his team, and those in attendance.
Crawford was up shortly after, turned his gaze toward Jean, and countered, "You gotta stop listening to those people in your head, man."
Perhaps it will be the calm before the storm, as underdog Jean looks to pull off what would be the upset of the year without question, while Crawford returns to his hometown for a third world title defense in Omaha, where he's fought harder in front of his rabid local fans.