WBO welterweight titleholder Terence “Bud” Crawford is having a hard time finding a suitable opponent, which has really been a problem for him since he’s moved up in weight. As a Top Rank fighter, it’s just not easy for him to face big names in a division largely ruled otherwise by PBC talent.
But former welterweight titlist Keith Thurman sounds ready to take Crawford up on a fight, taking some issue with Crawford making comments that Thurman wouldn’t actually fight him if offered the chance.
“Send the contract! Send the contract! Send the contract! Let me post it on IG and sign it live, baby, sign it live!” Thurman told Brian Custer on the Last Stand podcast. “They don’t know me. Crawford called me out like that, you don’t know me, man.”
Thurman continued, “I’m the one who said, ‘I got an 0, I’m not afraid to let it go, if you can beat me, beat me!’ Pac beat me, can you beat me?! Can you go toe-to-toe, can you go blow-for-blow? I don’t know! Send the contract! I ain’t no cherry-picker. Go look at my resume.”
The 31-year-old Thurman (29-1, 22 KO) hasn’t fought since July 2019, when he lost the WBA title to Manny Pacquiao, and has had problems staying in the ring in recent years, dealing with a series of injuries. But while he’s considering taking a tune-up sort of fight to come back, and to test out a troublesome hand, he’s adamant that he’ll fight Crawford by the end of the year if he gets a good offer.
And he also doesn’t feel Crawford (36-0, 27 KO) has truly earned his keep since joining the welterweight ranks in 2018.
“Tell ESPN, tell them boys to send some zeroes my way. They know an appropriate, respectful number,” he said. “Then I sign on the dotted line, baby. Don’t act like I’m gonna run from you. You never got respect in the game at 147. You haven’t pushed the buttons at 147. You ain’t touched Shawn Porter, you ain’t touched Thurman, you ain’t touched Garcia, you ain’t touched Spence.”
There’s at least something to talk about here, but in all candor it’d be a bit surprising if we get Crawford-Thurman. There was talk of Crawford facing Shawn Porter earlier this year, too, with PBC even signing off on letting Porter negotiate for that bout, but nothing came of it. And Crawford has seemed reluctant to return for a lesser payday than normal, which is just a reality for all fighters right now as the sport simply can’t generate revenue like usual without live crowds. So we’ll see, but while Thurman is fired up and the fight would be a good one, I wouldn’t get ahead of myself here.