Terence ‘Bud’ Crawford is one step closer to returning to Las Vegas.
The undefeated pound-for-pound entrant and three-division titlist remains in preparation for a November 14 showdown with England’s Kell Brook. A motion to stage the event at an MGM Grand property was unanimously passed by the Nevada State Athletic Commission during its monthly agenda hearing on Wednesday.
Crawford (36-0, 27KOs) will attempt the fourth defense of the welterweight title he acquired in a 9th round stoppage of then-unbeaten Jeff Horn in June 2018. That bout took place at MGM Grand, marking the last time Crawford has fought in Sin City.
Should the bout definitively land there, it will mark the first such career appearance for Brook (39-2, 27KOs) and just his third overall fight to take place in the United States.
The 34-year old Sheffield native claimed a welterweight title in his last trip stateside, outpointing Shawn Porter in their August 2014 clash in Carson, California. Three defenses followed before suffering an 11th round stoppage at the hands of Errol Spence in May 2017. Brook has since won three straight, all above the welterweight limit.
Despite Wednesday’s ruling, there remains an outside chance of the ESPN-televised title fight to take place in Crawford’s hometown of Omaha, Nebraska. Such an event will not come with the past fanfare enjoyed by Crawford who played to sold out crowds at CHI Health Center (nee CenturyLink Center) in five previous appearances, including a 12th round stoppage of unbeaten Jose Benavidez in October 2018.
Top Rank, Crawford’s promoter has run shows out of The Bubble at MGM Grand in Las Vegas ever since resuming regularly scheduled action this past June. The events have taken place behind closed doors due to COVID protocol, although a limited amount of spectators will be present for the October 17 World lightweight championship between Vasiliy Lomachenko (14-1, 10KOs) and Teofimo Lopez (15-0, 12KOs).
Presumably, the same luxury would be afforded the November 14 ruling, in light of a recent announcement from Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak declaring that the maximum limit on public gatherings was increased to 250 people effective October 1.
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox