By Scoop Malinowski
Errol Spence vs Terence Crawford has been marinating for about a year now. But last weekend, the welterweight clash of titans officially became prime time and ready to be served to the public.
The two 147 pound champions met face to face at a show in Oklahoma City on Saturday night and had some heated words.
“I’m gonna crush you, and I’m gonna stop you,” said IBF welterweight world champion Spence, looking straight into the face of WBO rival Terence Crawford. “I’m gonna stop you, easy. It’s gonna be easy work, I promise you.”
“Try that body shot,” replied Crawford, comparing their cores. “I’m solid. Solid as a rock. That’s fat [referring to Spence.]”
“It don’t matter,” said Spence. “I’m gonna knock you out. You got wobbled by [Yuriorkis] Gamboa. We’ve seen your wobbly legs.”
“You got hurt by [Carlos] Ocampo. And you got hurt by Kell Brook,” Crawford revealed. “Wait until I hit you. You gonna look like (Jose) Benavidez.”
“He had one leg,” said Spence of Benavidez, who wore a brace against Crawford due to a pre-existing injury. “But I’m solid.”
Crawford: “I’m gonna make you do the Stanky Leg.”
Spence: “What you wanna bet on that? I’ll bet $100,000 on that.”
Crawford: “Let’s bet $1 million.”
Spence: “Let’s bet $1 million. Easy.”
They shook hands.
But now it awaits the permission of the Control Freak Al Haymon who has already puppetmastered Spence to publicly talk down earlier this year, any fight with Crawford. Remember, Spence famously declaring he wasn’t going to fight Crawford and that Crawford should stay on his side of the street? That was Haymon and Spence laying the foundation for the duck. They didn’t want the fight. Obviously.
Though Spence and Crawford now appear ready and eager to face off next year, getting Al Haymon on board to greenlight this showdown is another issue altogether. Haymon is on his second life with PBC with a new FOX TV deal and right now he can’t afford to risk the loss of one of his key fighters like Spence. Haymon does not control any proven money generators aside from Manny Pacquiao.
Typical Haymon operational procedure is to protect Spence from Crawford, just like he protected Mayweather from Pacquiao for six years. Stevenson from Kovalev, Davis from Lomachenko and Wilder from Joshua and Whyte.
This is a critical moment in the career of Haymon because everyone just saw this Spence vs Crawford confrontation and they both committed to the fight. It’s on film. We already know Arum has always wanted the fight. So if it does not happen now, it’s all on Haymon for blocking it. And if Haymon does indeed block Spence vs Crawford now, we know he’s a coward, afraid to take big risks, and lacking confidence in Spence to beat the best.
If Haymon dares to block Spence vs Crawford now he should be run out of the sport and boycotted because he will have officially exposed himself as a con artist businessman not interested in giving the fans the best vs the best, but giving them in house sets ups that benefit himself and his future business and leverage.
If Haymon shows courage and makes a deal with Arum to produce Spence vs Crawford, Haymon deserves a lot of credit for doing the right thing for the sport, the fans, and the integrity of the sport.