By: Hans Themistode
For those clamoring for Terence Crawford to step into the ring with a marquee opponent, they may finally get their wish.
As first reported by Mike Coppinger of The Athletic, former eight-division world champion Manny Pacquiao and current WBO welterweight belt holder Terence Crawford, are currently discussing a showdown that would take place on June 5th.
For Crawford, he has long pursued a contest with one of boxing’s biggest stars for years. Now, he is apparently on his way to having his wish granted. Top Rank, the promotional company that currently promotes Crawford, has placed a hold on June 5th for their possible contest.
While all signs point to their bout coming to fruition, there remains one major hurdle. Funding.
At the moment, the front runner to land their contest is Abu Dhabi. Bringing the contest to their foreign land would come as no surprise as they have become serious players in terms of landing major fights over the past few years.
News of their contest possibly becoming a reality is somewhat surprising though. Earlier this month, former four-division world champion Mikey Garcia revealed to the world that a showdown between himself and Pacquiao was set in stone.
“In the last few weeks, we’ve been getting very close to finalizing this,” said Garcia in early May. “I’m pretty excited.”
Although Pacquiao never officially came out and agreed with the sentiments of Garcia, he appeared to be on board with their matchup.
“We’re leaning towards Mikey Garcia,” said Pacquiao during an interview with Dyan Castillejo of ABS-CBN earliler this month.
Fast forward to today, however, and Crawford appears to be firmly in the driver’s seat. Earlier this week, promoter Bob Arum revealed that Crawford’s next showdown will be unveiled this week. The long-time promoter also noted that it would be a “big fight,” for Crawford as well.
While Arum admitted Pacquiao was certainly in the running, he also confessed that former two-time welterweight champion Shawn Porter was a possibility as well. Although Crawford has always said that he would have no issue facing Porter, he also acknowledged that his preference would be a mega showdown against Pacquiao.
The Nebraska native was last seen in the ring in November late last year, dismantling former champion Kell Brook via fourth-round stoppage. As for Pacquiao, he’s enjoyed his time away from the ring. His July of 2019 decision victory over Keith Thurman was his last appearance.
Like many of boxing’s biggest names, Pacquiao was affected by the ongoing pandemic, mostly because crowds have not been allowed to attend sporting events until recently. Earlier this year, the future first-ballot Hall of Famer expressed a desire to return to the ring. Due to his inactivity, however, the world title he picked up against Thurman was taken away from him and instead, Yordenis Ugas, who held the WBA Regular version, was subsequently elevated to full belt holder.
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