Speaking with Crystina Poncher recently, Top Rank’s Bob Arum was asked to compare one of his current stars, welterweight titleholder Terence Crawford, with the 147-pound stars of the past.
Arum had a quick answer, and it may not be the fighter you’d expect.
“The fighter he reminds me the most of is Donald Curry,” Arum said. “Curry was such a great welterweight, a good puncher, a lot of skills. A lot of people thought that Curry during his heyday was going to eclipse the great Sugar Ray Leonard. Whenever I see Crawford fight, I always think back to Donald Curry.”
Curry fought from 1980-91 in the pros, and again two times in 1997, and won the WBA and IBF titles in 1983 and 1984, defending both until a massive upset loss to Lloyd Honeyghan in 1986.
“The Lone Star Cobra” hasn’t had the sort of romantic post-career coverage that some of his contemporaries get to this day, but Curry (34-6, 25 KO) was a great fighter, and was inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 2019. He was a tremendous amateur and was a gold medal favorite for the 1980 Olympics, which the United States boycotted. Comparing Crawford to Curry is high praise from Arum.
Arum also says it’s difficult to compare eras, and talked about being asked how Muhammad Ali would do against today’s top heavyweight, Tyson Fury.
“That’s an unfair question to ask because we never saw Muhammad Ali with an athlete as good and as agile and as big as Tyson Fury,” Arum said.
“When Ali was fighting, he was considered a big heavyweight when he was barely 6’3”. He never fought great athletes who were 6’6”, 6’9”. How would he have fared against a guy with that bulk and that size and that athletic ability?”