Omaha, Nebraska-- WBO junior welterweight champion Terence "Bud" Crawford (26-0, 18 KOs) and Dierry Jean (29-1, 20 KO's) hold the final press conference inside the beautiful Century Link Center of Omaha Nebraska Thursday afternoon to announce their well anticipated 12-round main event Saturday night live on HBO. Also on the fight card is Top Rank's Unbeaten Heavyweight fighter, Andy Ruiz Jr. (25-0, 17 KOs) as he goes toe to toe against Raphael Zumbano (37-11-1 30 KOs) in an 8 round scrap. Photography by Mikey Williams for Top Rank Boxing
The two warriors boast a near-perfect combined record of 55-1 (38 KOs) -- a winning ratio of 98% with nearly 70% of those victories coming by way of knockout.
Promoted by Top Rank®, in association with Tecate, tickets are priced at $27, $52, $77 and $127, reserved seat tickets are available at the CenturyLink Center Omaha box office and all Ticketmaster outlets. To charge-by-phone call (800) 745-3000. To order online, visit www.ticketmaster.com .
"I will be totally prepared for whatever Dierry Jean brings to the ring," said Crawford. "I love this big event as it is not often Omaha fans get to attend a prize fight live on HBO."
"I just can't wait! I want this. I'm hungry," said Jean. "Crawford is the HBO darling who is supposed to be the next big thing but I will hurt him. Mark my words! I will be crowned world champion on October 24th."
"Terence is well on his way to topping his breakout year in 2014 where he won three career-best world championship victories en route to earning Fighter of the Year accolades,” said Todd duBoef, president of Top Rank. “Now that Terence is a two-division world champion he will be bringing that momentum on October 24 when he returns home to the great fans of Omaha and to HBO, defending his newly-won junior welterweight world title against the Canadian cold front known as Dierry Jean, who has iced seven of his last ten opponents."
"This is a BIG fight for Terence. Dierry Jean is an excellent fighter and Terence knows it," said Cameron Dunkin, Crawford's co-manager. "Terence is very focused and is training harder than ever anticipating a very competitive fight. Believe me, Terence will be ready!"
"Dierry Jean is recognized by most observers as one of the most talented boxers to ever come out of Canada," said Camille Estephan, Jean's manager. "His lone loss was in his first world title challenge and he doesn't want to miss his chance for a world title this time. Dierry wants to fulfill his potential and I believe he's learned from his world title shot experience in January 2014. It's great that we have a chance at redemption and October 24th will be his moment. This fight has the makings of a great battle for the fans."
"In 2014 lightweight champion Terence Crawford emerged as a superstar earning Fighter of the Year honors," said Peter Nelson, vice president of programming, HBO Sports. “He kicked off 2015 with a huge statement by moving up to a new division and knocking out Thomas Dulorme to remain undefeated and become a world champ at 140 pounds. Now Terence will defend his new title against Canada’s Dierry Jean who has won his last four bouts and looks to upset the champion before a partisan hometown crowd in Omaha.”
Crawford (26-0, 18 KOs), of Omaha, Neb., makes his ring debut as WBO junior welterweight world champion. The consensus Top-10 pound-for-pound fighter will be looking to build on his star-making 2014 which featured three world championship victories as well as Fighter of the Year honors from the BWAA and major media alike. Crawford, 27. captured the vacant WBO junior welterweight crown on April 18, via a devastating sixth-round knockout of once-beaten No. 2 world-rated contender Thomas Dulorme. Crawford began his career-best year on March 1, 2014, just 13 days short of the sixth anniversary of his professional debut.
He captured the WBO lightweight title, dethroning defending champion Ricky Burns on Burns’ home turf of Glasgow, Scotland. Scoring a powerful and unanimous decision, Crawford put the boxing world on notice with his virtuoso performance as he pulled out all stops in dismantling Burns, rocking the defending champion throughout the fight, while switching back and forth between orthodox and southpaw stances. He followed that with a dramatic and critically-acclaimed knockout victory of undefeated former world champion and Cuban Olympic gold medalist Yuriorkis Gamboa on June 28, 2014, in a Fight of the Year nominee. It was one of the most-watched fights of the year with over 1.2 million viewers catching the live, first-time airing of the fight, according to Nielsen Media Research.
He concluded 2014 on November 29 with a thorough shellacking of one-time world title challenger and No. 1 contender Ray Beltran, winning 11 of the 12 rounds. Crawford is only the second Nebraska native to be recognized as a boxing world champion. Perry “Kid” Graves, from Rock Bluff, captured the welterweight crown, knocking out Johnny Alberts in Brooklyn, in 1914, according to the Omaha World-Herld.
Jean (29-1, 20 KOs), a native of Port-au-Prince, Haiti, who now fights out of Montréal, Québec, Canada, returns to the ring riding a four-bout winning streak, with three of those victories coming by way of knockout, since suffering a 12-round decision loss to International Boxing Federation (IBF) junior welterweight world champion Lamont Peterson on January 25, 2014.
Career highlights include an IBF junior welterweight title elimination victory over Cleotis Pendarvis, which led to his world title challenge of Peterson, NABF and NABA super lightweight title victories over Lanardo Tyner, Ivan Cano and Juan Rivera, and NABF lightweight title victories over Mario Perez and Daniel Ruiz. Only Tyner avoided losing by knockout. Jean, 33, is currently world-rated No. 2 by the World Boxing Council (WBC) and No. 6 by the WBO.