Patrick Teixeira surprised a fair amount of people last November when he won a deserved decision over Carlos Adames to claim the interim WBO junior middleweight title, and has since been elevated to full titleholder status, with Jaime Munguia moving up to middleweight.
The 29-year-old Brazilian was meant to defend against top contender Brian Castano of Argentina in April, but that obviously didn’t happen due to the coronavirus pandemic. It seems likely that they’ll meet on a rescheduled date — it was a mandatory order — but Teixeira is aiming for a bigger name: WBO welterweight titleholder Terence “Bud” Crawford.
Speaking with The Ring, Teixeira (31-1, 22 KO) was not remotely disrespectful, but confident he would win the fight:
“Terence Crawford is one of the pound-for-pound best fighters in the world, and I think a fight with him would be terrific for boxing. ... I’d be delighted to get that fight, and I think there’s a great chance of that fight taking place. ... I see myself outpointing Crawford. It’s going to be really hard to knock out a guy like Crawford.”
Crawford (36-0, 27 KO) moving up to 154 would be a challenge in some ways, but if you look at the landscape of that division, he has a good chance to do well. That said, he started out as a lightweight, and not that many people have won titles at both 135 and 154. It’s a tough task to go up 19 pounds over time and still be a world title-level fighter.
That said, Teixeira is without question seen as one of the most vulnerable titlists in the sport today. It’s not that hard to form an argument he doesn’t even really have a top 10 resume at 154, though we have him ranked No. 10, which is the lowest of any titleholder in any division in the sport.
I’d favor Crawford. I have bigger questions how Terence might do against someone like Jermell Charlo, and someone like Jarrett Hurd might legitimately just be too big style-wise, but 154 has been entertainingly unstable for a couple of years now, and it could be a chance for Crawford to at least add a fourth division title for legacy and all that. His cupboard has been a bit bare at 147 due to promotional ties, and while there’s been talk of him fighting Manny Pacquiao, that has quieted down and may not be going anywhere. If the best option at 147 is fighting Kell Brook, why not just chase a belt at 154?