Terence Crawford vs. Kell Brook? Max Warren writes about the matchup
It’s no secret; anybody interested in boxing wants Terence “Bud” Crawford and Errol Spence to square off in a super-fight at welterweight.
Bob Arum, CEO and founder of Top Rank Inc., mentioned that he is going to speak with Al Haymon, Spence’s advisor, and try to make the fight happen this year. Arum is fully aware that Crawford’s options are limited, considering Top Rank doesn’t have any fighters in its stable that can currently compete with Crawford. Despite Arum’s willingness to make the fight happen, Crawford vs. Spence won’t happen in 2019.
Arum has been critical of Haymon, blaming him for blocking the best fights for the sport. Directly after Crawford vs. Khan, Arum said “[Haymon will tell Spence] don’t listen to the white guys. Because if you listen to the white guys, they’re going to steer you down the road.” Haymon never takes part in interviews, so we will never know his direct response to all of Arum’s criticisms.
But,we definitely know that Haymon is taking offense to these remarks, and condemning his business will likely make it so the fight won’t happen in the immediate future. The reality is that Spence has several big fights to choose from under the PBC banner, while Bob Arum will likely have to overpay top opponents to face Crawford due to the limited supply of worthy competitors at welterweight that aren’t signed with Al Haymon. One such worthy competitor is the former IBF Welterweight World Champion from England, Kell Brook.
Brook sat ringside at the Crawford vs. Khan fight, gladly watching his domestic rival Khan get stopped in the 6th. After the bout, Brook made it clear that he wants to face Crawford and he is no longer interested in facing Khan. A Crawford fight is an enormous opportunity, since Crawford is considered to be one of the best fighters in the world and he’s the current IBF Welterweight World Champion.
If Brook can beat Crawford, he will be viewed as an elite competitor once again. Brook has dealt with a couple of hard defeats in consecutive bouts, losing and suffering career-threatening injuries against Gennady Golovkin and Errol Spence. (Golovkin broke Brook’s left orbital bone, and Spence broke Brook’s right orbital bone in the following match). Before both defeats, Brook was viewed as a fringe-level pound-for-pound talent, and some considered him the best welterweight in the world.
Brook would still be the best welterweight that Crawford has ever faced. Both fighters are the same age (32), and they’ve defeated solid opposition. Without a doubt, Brook has the ability to push Crawford and compete with him. Brook has faced and beat better opposition at 147 than Crawford. Of note, Brook defeated current WBC Welterweight World Champion Shawn Porter in 2015, and gave Errol Spence difficulty until Brook was later stopped in the 11th. Given the political divide in boxing’s landscape and Crawford’s short list of potential opponents that aren’t aligned with Al Haymon, Terence Crawford vs. Kell Brook is by far the most enticing fight that Crawford can get at this point. It’s also the most lucrative fight that is feasible to make for Crawford, and perhaps it’s the only high-paying fight for him in the immediate future. Brook is fairly popular and he would bring out a large number of UK fans to the United States for a Crawford fight.
Crawford vs. Brook is a great way to further promote a super-fight between Spence and Crawford. With “Bud” facing Spence’s former opponent, people can make comparisons of how each performed against Brook. If Crawford defeats Brook in more impressive fashion than Spence did, “Bud” can put more pressure on Spence and his management team to make the fight. With a decisive victory, Bob Arum can claim that those with a financial interest in Spence are afraid to come to the table and make the fight happen. A win over Brook will allow for more conversations to develop regarding the super-fight we all want, and the big match will only happen if there is enough demand for it. Sometimes fans have to take what they can get, and many fans will happily watch Crawford vs. Brook if it comes to fruition.