By: Sean Crose
It’s been a while since the fight world has seen Keith Thurman in action. In fact, it’s been over two years. It’s been a long layoff, even by Thurman’s standards – though, to be fair, the Covid pandemic hasn’t helped. Now, however, the man is set to return to action on February 5h, when he’ll be headlining a Premiere Boxing Champion’s pay per view card against Mario Barios. “In 2022, I will remind the world of boxing that Keith Thurman is a fighter not to forget,” Thurman posted on social media Wednesday. “I’m back and I’m ready to fight!”
A video released on FightHub Tuesday showed a lean, and sweat soaked Thurman banging away at a heavy bag while wearing a weight vest. “Just fifteen rounds, baby,” he says afterwards, winking at the camera. “Just got this drip drip going,” he adds, referring to his drenched t-shirt. “It’s good for you fight fans. Just for you, baby.” Needless to say, the man appears to be working hard. Yet hard work has never been an issue for Thurman. He’s only lost once, and that was to the legendary Manny Pacquiao. Furthermore, he’s bested top names like Danny Garcia and Shawn Porter. The issue with Thurman, as far as fans are concerned, is a lack of activity.
In truth, the fighter known as “One Time” is now heading into his mid thirties. Also worth noting is the fact that Thurman has only fought four times in the past five years. Although Covid and injuries couldn’t be avoided, some have wondered how interested Thurman really is in the fight game at this point in his career. He’s made lots of money, after all, and has been a world titlist. Countless fighters have proven it’s hard to keep the hunger once real success has been attained.
Thurman, however, wants the public to know that he’s back and still a prominent welterweight. If he performs well against Barios, whose lone defeat was at the gloved fists of Gervonta Davis, a match with a fighter named Spence, Crawford, or Ugas may be in order for Thurman. If he looks rusty in February, or should he actually lose, much of the luster around Thurman’s heretofore lucrative name, may vanish. Barios might not be considered big name competition, but Thurman has a lot riding on this upcoming fight. Recent evidence indicates that may be something the Floridian is keenly aware of.
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