Developing: Errol Spence Jr.-Terence Crawford Megafight Looks Like July 29
It continues. It’s ongoing. It now appears closer than ever that it’s going to happen. After additional reporting on the potential welterweight superfight between IBF, WBA and WBC titlist Errol Spence Jr. and WBO counterpart Terence Crawford, RingTV.com has learned that the target date will be Saturday, July 29, most likely at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. It will be a Premier Boxing Champions (PBC) event shown on Showtime PPV and will also be available on PPV.com.
The fight, which will be for The Ring’s vacant 147-pound championship, is not yet signed and is still being negotiated. But things seem to be coming to fruition. What has been known is that both southpaws want the fight—and many associated with the fight stated that they would like the fight to take place this summer, and certainly within the 2023 calendar year. Everyone associated with the fight agree that it is going to happen.
Hopefully, an official fight announcement will be made soon.
Numerous sources—unrelated to one another—aware of the discussions have stated almost verbatim that one side continues to over value itself in the boxing and overall sports marketplace as the reason for the holdup.
Otherwise, the fight would have been signed and a date and venue would have been set by now. The summer remains the ideal time to garner the greatest amount of attention for the fight, before the NFL season begins in the fall, which is the premier sports league in the U.S. and holds a King Kong dominance over American sports media. For Spence-Crawford to get the optimum level of success, the promotion would need two months to build the fight without much competition for the sports entertainment dollar than risk the loss of crossover appeal during an NFL season.
The July 29 would provide ample time to do that. The July 22 date appeared to be the target date, which has shifted like gas prices. Since the story was originally posted on Friday, April 28, numerous sources revealed that July 22 was always subject to change, since the date for this fight has already changed several times.
As stated in the original story, it is boxing, nothing is ever certain until names are on contracts—and sometimes, not even then. Nothing is ever set. What is also a strong possibility is that the two will move up to 154 after the July 29th welterweight fight. Whether or not the two will fight again at 154 is uncertain at this time, but it is also a possibility.
Getting the fight signed and set is the priority. The Tank Davis-Ryan Garcia fight was originally slated for Saturday April 15, and pushed back a week to accommodate the Davis’ camp and allow more time for the promotion.
As first reported by Keith Idec of BoxingScene.com, the Davis-Garcia Showtime Pay-Per-View main event generated approximately 1.2 million buys in the U.S. Idec reported that, “Most insiders interviewed by BoxingScene.com before Davis’ seventh-round knockout of Garcia projected that it would produce anywhere between 450,000 and 750,000 buys, which still would’ve been a success based on the state of the boxing pay-per-view business in the U.S.”
A million buys is considered today’s gold standard. Davis-Garcia took place before a sellout crowd of 20,842 at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. The gate revenue was $22.8 million. The 1.2 million Davis-Garcia buys translated to roughly $102 million, and a total revenue of $136.8 million when considering merchandise sells, international sales and commercial revenue—and that’s a rough estimate on the low side. The total promotion generated about $140 million.
That is hugely encouraging news for the sport of boxing, though it might not apply to Spence-Crawford. No one is disputing Spence and Crawford are not superstars. But right now, they have fallen into the niche of “boxing superstars,” a notch below Davis and Garcia’s upward crossover trajectory. While a big fight to fight fans, Spence-Crawford may not hold the same cache to younger sports fans, since both are over 30, with Crawford on the brink of turning 36 in September, and Spence just turned 33 in March. Their Q-rating brand and social media star appeal to the mainstream does not equal the scale of Davis-Garcia.
So, time is of pressing importance to get Spence-Crawford made, so the gears begin generating media attention to it. Each time a new report comes out about Spence-Crawford taking place, the uninformed outside of boxing media are understandably pessimistic, as they should be, since this fight has been rumored to take place for years.
It’s a fight that the boxing public has yearned for and multiple sources confirmed is nearing fruition.
One side appears set. The other side isn’t yet.
The Ring’s No. 1 rated welterweight, Spence (28-0, 22 knockouts) represented the U.S. at the London 2012 Olympics. The 33-year-old southpaw has made six defenses and added WBA and WBC titles. He holds championship wins over Mikey Garcia (UD 12), Shawn Porter (SD 12), Danny Garcia (UD 12) and Yordenis Ugas (TKO 10).
Crawford (39-0, 30 KOs) is The Ring’s No. 2 rated welterweight. The ultra-talented switch-hitter from Nebraska has won titles at 135, 140 and 147.
Since moving to welterweight, the 35-year-old Crawford has won the WBO title and made six successful defenses, which includes victories over Amir Khan (TKO 6), Brook (TKO 4), Shawn Porter (TKO 10), and most recently, David Avanesyan (KO 6).
Joseph Santoliquito is an award-winning sportswriter who has been working for Ring Magazine/RingTV.com since October 1997 and is the president of the Boxing Writers Association of America.
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