By: Hans Themistode
With only a few fights under his belt, Errol Spence Jr. placed an emphasis on facing the best of the best early on in his career. Little by little his wishes were granted as he began climbing up the welterweight ladder. The Dallas native now stands as a unified champion and has the scalps of several top welterweights on his resume.
Following a one car wreck in October of 2019, the consensus thought surrounding his return was that he would take a soft touch. The current unified titlist hadn’t fought since his 12 round war with Shawn Porter in September of 2019 and things seemed to make sense for him to use a lesser opponent to dust off any ring rust and confidence issues. Yet, Spence Jr. (26-0, 21 KOs) would hear none of it as he opted to face former two division world titlist Danny Garcia on December 5th, instead.
To the 30 year old southpaw, an easy win may have looked good on the outside but in order to say he’s truly back, he believes he needs to be tested from the very beginning.
“I didn’t want any tune up fights or someone I can knock out in the first round,” said Spence Jr. during a recent virtual press conference. “I wanted someone who was going to be tough and push me to the limit that I know I need to be pushed to so I can get back to Errol Spence Jr. Me facing a lesser opponent was back when I made my pro debut and my first ten fights. Now, I want to fight the top guys in the division. I finally got to a spot where I can fight the big names so I’m not going to go backward, I’m going to go forward. I picked Danny Garcia so I can rise to the occasion.”
Spence Jr.’s wreck was a horrific one. Images of his flipped over sports car quickly made the rounds on social media. No pictures of him were released, however, earlier this year on the one year anniversary of his crash, the Dallas native posted a picture of himself lying in a hospital with a swollen face and lacerations spewed across his face.
Usual conversations concerning who was the best in the welterweight division carried the caveat of “let’s see if Spence is the same first.” For the southpaw though, the answer to that question remains the same.
“I’m still the top dog in my division even after the car crash. I’ll show that I’m still a great fighter.”