LOS ANGELES – June 13, 2023 – Undefeated boxing superstars and pound-for-pound greats Errol “The Truth” Spence Jr. and Terence “Bud” Crawford went face-to-face for the first time Tuesday before they meet for the undisputed welterweight championship on Saturday, July 29 in a SHOWTIME PPV (8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT) clash from T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas headlining a Premier Boxing Champions event. Spence is the unified WBC, WBA and IBF Welterweight World Champion, while Crawford holds the WBO 147-pound world championship.
The winner of this matchup of undefeated superstars will become the first undisputed welterweight world champion in the four-belt era and likely emerge as the sport’s No. 1 pound-for-pound fighter. Spence vs. Crawford joins Sugar Ray Leonard vs. Thomas Hearns, Pernell Whitaker vs. Julio César Chávez and Floyd Mayweather vs. Manny Pacquiao, as a generational matchup of two popular stars whose dynamic and aggressive styles should produce an instant classic.
At their first in-person meeting since the fight was announced, Spence and Crawford both promised to deliver performances commensurate with the anticipation of this historic matchup at the kickoff press conference.
“This is the biggest fight in boxing right now,” said Spence. “This is a legendary fight. It’s an old-school fight. This is like the fights my dad used to tell me about. It’s the best fighting the best.”
“This is definitely a legacy fight and a fight that should be talked about everywhere,” said Crawford. “This is an old school type of fight. All the greats have fought each other and that’s what we’re doing for this era.”
Spence vs. Crawford will be highlighted by three episodes of the Emmy® Award-winning series ALL-ACCESS from SHOWTIME Sports with ALL-ACCESS: SPENCE VS. CRAWFORD Episode One premiering on Saturday, July 8 at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT and Episode Two debuting on Saturday, July 15 at 9:30 p.m. ET/6:30 p.m. PT with an Epilogue days after the fight.
Tickets for the live event, which is promoted by Man Down Promotions, TBC Promotions and TGB Promotions, are available through AXS.com.
Here is what the press conference participants had to say Tuesday from The Beverly Hills Hotel:
ERROL SPENCE JR.
“Everybody tune in and come out to the fight, because we’re gonna have a Craw-fish boil. And there’s gonna be enough for everybody. I promise you that.
“We had to get on the phone and talk about it, and now it’s finally happening. This is gonna prove not only who the best welterweight is, but who the best fighter in the world is. My mentality is to go all out and give everything. His mentality is the same.
“Terence hasn’t fought anybody. Even Shawn Porter said he didn’t train like he should against you. Kell Brook was already broken. I broke Kell Brook’s other eye, that’s how he got broke.
“Terence is a great fighter and I’m gonna break another great fighter’s will. Mentally and physically, I’m gonna dominate and come out on top.
“I don’t pay attention to the odds. Everything I’ve been through the last few years, I understand being the underdog. A lot of underdogs end up winning, that’s why it’s a bet.
“This is gonna be a one-sided ass whooping. It’s gonna take a few rounds, because he’s a tough dude. But everyone gets broke and we’re gonna break him down.
“I can guarantee you this is gonna be an action-packed, old school type of fight. If you’ve been craving those old fights, you have to tune into this one. This is a legendary fight. Belts aside, you talk about just these two fighters, this is the biggest fight in boxing. Especially because of the action we bring. We’re both going for the victory.”
“Y’all are going to witness greatness. We measure greatness by eras. July 29, I’m going to show everyone why this era is the Terence Crawford era.
“I’m so excited that we’re here today and that we got this fight done. I’m excited for the fans. I have a gift for each and every one of y’all, because I love the fans. Without the fans, there’s no us. I’m going to give you all a gift with the presence of the two of us on July 29.
“He calls himself the big fish. What happens when you take the fish out the water? You suffocate him.
“A win shows that I’m the greatest fighter of the era. No man has captured undisputed in two weight classes. That solidifies me as the greatest fighter of this era.
“I’m gonna gut him and feed him to everyone that eats fish in here. If he’s a big fish, we’re gonna have enough for everyone, with potatoes on the side. We don’t smoke over here, we go hunting for fish fillet.
“People after this fight are gonna say that Bud Crawford is special. I can assure you that. He’ll give me my respect after the fight after I whoop that ass.
“I can guarantee that everyone is gonna witness something special. Errol doesn’t like to back up. I’m the type of fighter where you push me and I push even harder. We both have big hearts and like to fight. It makes for a great action-packed fight. July 29 is gonna be a great night for boxing.”
DERRICK JAMES, Spence’s Trainer
“This is something that’s been coming for a long time. There’s been a lot of talk and speculation. What it’s all about right now is July 29.
“It’s time to get busy. That’s all we care about. I’m ready to see Errol go out there and do what he needs to do. He did what he said he’d do and got those three belts, now it’s time to get one more.
“I believe that Errol will win the fight because of his technique and skill set. It’s not so much about gamesmanship. He doesn’t talk, he goes in there and gets busy. What you’ll see once again is Errol prove his dominance over another fighter.
“It’s not about knocking a guy out, it’s about breaking a fighter. It’s about taking away their desire to fight. That’s what you’ll see July 29.
“It’s all about the big fish right now. I like the Crawford team, we’re really co-workers because that’s the only way to make this happen. But on the night of the fight, it’s gonna be showtime for real.”
BRIAN “BO MAC” MCINTYRE, Crawford’s Trainer
“I’m so glad these fighters stayed the course and got this fight made. They’re going to show the world who the best fighter is. That really tells you about each fighter’s character.
“We’re gonna show you the best fighter in the world on July 29. It will be us. Don’t miss it. I promise you. I know Spence is coming and Derrick is gonna do a damn good job training him, but it doesn’t matter.
“Terence is the better fighter and the world knows that. If you just look how he goes about his business, there’s no playing around with him. He comes to get you out of there. Once he hurts you, that’s a wrap.
“Errol is a damn good fighter. He accomplished a lot in the game and I tip my hat to him and to Derrick. But the real fighters know who’s gonna win this fight.
“I promise you from the bottom of my heart, that we’re going to walk away victorious.”
“This is as big as it gets. The best two fighters in the world, both in their prime and both undefeated world champions. This is not just a mega fight, it’s bigger than that. It’s a generational fight. It’s an instant classic that you’ll remember for years to come. Legacies will be determined on July 29.
“Not only is Errol one of the best fighters in the world, but he’s a boxing miracle for what he’s gone through. He’s also box office gold. His last fight generated a massive live gate at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas and he’s proven he sells outside Texas. Now he’s coming to do the same in the boxing capital of the world of Las Vegas.
“There’s no more talk about who’s on what side of the street; on Saturday July 29, ‘Bud’ Crawford will be in one corner and Errol Spence Jr. will be in the other corner. When the fight is over, there will be one man standing in the center of the ring with his hand raised and all four belts. He will be the new undisputed pound-for-pound king of boxing.”
STEPHEN ESPINOZA, President of SHOWTIME Sports
“This is a fantastic time to be a boxing fan, with big fights and top fighters against top fighters. These fights are happening more regularly and there’s one place where they’re happening more often than anywhere else, and that’s SHOWTIME and SHOWTIME PPV.
“Together with PBC, we’ve delivered the strongest schedule in the sport. This year through July we’ve scheduled 17 big-time boxing events. It’s probably the strongest run of fights we’ve had in the 37 year history of SHOWTIME BOXING.
“We’re thrilled to be delivering this once in a generation fight. This fight speaks for itself. Two of the best fighters in the sport fighting to make history. If you were going to create the perfect fight, it would look a lot like this. Two of the best and most skilled fighters in the sport, two fighters with knockout power, and all-action fan friendly styles. This fight is so evenly matched that the betting odds are almost dead even. We’ve got history on the line, and fighters who’ve overcome adversity and with big and enthusiastic fan bases.
“This fight has all the elements boxing fans could wish for. And it’s all in one fight. We’ll see you on July 29.”
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