LAS VEGAS – Terence Crawford had harsher words for Kell Brook on Wednesday than he originally offered when Brook predicted Monday that he’ll either stop Crawford or make him quit on his stool Saturday night.
Crawford reminded Brook during their press conference at MGM Grand that it is Brook who “ever quit in a fight,” not him. The undefeated Crawford seemingly referred to Brook’s 11th-round knockout defeat to Errol Spence Jr. in May 2017.
“He gonna have to – you know what I mean – live up to his words,” Crawford said Wednesday. “You know, I’m not the one that ever quit in a fight. You know, I can’t say the same for him, though.”
Brook, bothered by a fractured orbital bone around his left eye, took a knee in the 11th round versus Spence. The former IBF welterweight champion didn’t answer referee Howard John Foster’s count in time and was stopped in a second straight bout.
In Brook’s previous appearance, his trainer, Dominic Ingle, threw in the towel to stop his fight against Gennadiy Golovkin in the fifth round. Brook suffered a broken right eye socket during that brutal bout, for which Brook admirably moved up from welterweight to middleweight.
The 34-year-old Brook dismissed Crawford’s criticism during an interview with BoxingScene.com immediately after the press conference. The former IBF welterweight champion pointed out that he suffered serious injuries versus Golovkin and Spence, both of which required surgery.
“I’ve had the bone broken in an eye and not been able to see,” Brook said. “That’s his opinion. Let’s see if he can make me quit. Let’s see if he can break me, because, you know, I’m willing to die in that ring. I’m telling you now, this is sh-t or bust for me. Everything’s gone into this fight – everything. It’s not a joke. This is a serious game.”
The 33-year-old Crawford (36-0, 27 KOs), of Omaha, Nebraska, is scheduled to make his fourth defense of the WBO welterweight title when he boxes Brook (39-2, 27 KOs), of Sheffield, England, at MGM Grand Conference Center.
Crawford-Brook will headline ESPN’s three-bout broadcast in the United States (10 p.m. EST; 7 p.m. PST). Premier Sports 1 will televise Crawford-Brook in the United Kingdom, with coverage set to begin at 12:30 a.m. GMT.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.