FightHype just recently caught up with Top Rank promoter Bob Arum and asked him some straight questions about what it’ll take to make a Terence Crawford vs. Errol Spence fight. Here’s what the promoter had to say...
Arum on if he was in Al Haymon’s position, wouldn’t he also try to exhaust in-house fights before trying to make a Crawford-Spence fight (being that Haymon has a much deeper stable at welterweight):
“You gotta consider the fans. What is the best welterweight fight that anybody could put together? Clearly, Crawford and Spence. In the days where Leonard and Hearns were fighting, when Duran was fighting, you always matched the best against the best. It’s a massive fight, it’s a fight that Terence wants, it’s a fight that Errol wants — the promoters, if they stop that fight, ought to be ashamed of themselves. Plain and simple! Plain and simple.
“Forget the arithmetic, forget everything! Give the fans the fight that they want. Don’t put Spence in with a bunch of non-elite fighters. And unless I’m forced to, I won’t put Crawford with a bunch of fighters that don’t measure up and aren’t elite. Could I do it? Yeah. But I’d rather not because I would like to see both of these guys fight each other at the peak of their careers.”
On if he didn’t do the exact same thing with the Mayweather-Pacquiao negotiations, first matching Pacquiao against all his top in-house fighters before really engaging in the Mayweathers talks:
“The problem was Al Haymon. And the only reason that the Pacquiao and Mayweather fight ended up getting done was because Les Moonves, who is the head of CBS, told Haymon that unless he did that fight he had no more dates on Showtime. Really.
“Well, there’s nobody to tell Haymon that except the public. I think if Haymon doesn’t make the fight — the terms will be easy, the networks can do it together whether its FOX with them or ESPN with us, it would be massive — if he doesn’t do it then people should boycott PBS, or PBC, whatever they call it.”
On if that fight would have to include both Showtime and ESPN:
“Of course it has to be. Just the way a couple of years ago Mayweather and Pacquiao was a joint production of HBO and Showtime.”
On if there’s enough money in the pot to bring all these entities together:
“Easy. Easy. Easy. No problem with the money in the pot. Fighters can get guarantees and then if it takes off like Mayweather and Pacquiao did, the guarantees become meaningless because they share in the percentage.”
On his gut feeling if Crawford-Spence ever happens:
“I have no idea. All I’m saying is that we want to do that fight. All I’m saying is that Terence Crawford wants to do that fight, if he’s successful with Amir Khan. And based on my conversations with Errol Spence, he wants to do that fight. So if the fight doesn’t happen it’s on one guy and one guy alone, and that’s Al Haymon.”