Errol Spence Jr. knows the consequences of his car accident six months ago could’ve been much worse.
The 30-year-old boxer realizes he is extremely lucky to have lived through a horrific crash in which his Ferrari flipped over several times and he was ejected onto the pavement in downtown Dallas. Spence was hospitalized for more than a week following that terrible wreck October 10.
The DeSoto, Texas, native is thankful that he has recovered fully from injuries to his face and mouth. He is training for a return to the ring either in “September or October.”
As much as that accident hurt him physically, though, it helped Spence mentally. It made the wealthy welterweight champion appreciate his family and career more than when he had become “way too comfortable.”
Spence spoke about how that accident impacted his outlook on life with Premier Boxing Champions’ Ray Flores, who conducted an Instagram Live interview with the IBF/WBC 147-pound champion Monday.
“That whole accident, you know, put my boxing career in perspective and, you know, put my family in perspective, and you know, basically everything,” said Spence, who was charged with driving while intoxicated as a result of his accident. “And you know, I’m taking a lot serious now – as far as training, dieting, you know, making sure I don’t blow up too heavy in weight and things like that. So, you know, it basically put everything in perspective.
“I got a second chance, you know, basically at living, spending time with my family and my kids and everything like that. So, you know, I didn’t have anything set up for them if I woulda passed away, God forbid. If anything woulda happened to me, I didn’t have anything set up for them and things like that. So, I made sure to get everything set up with them and, you know, basically take everything more serious. … Now I’m a hundred percent, and I’m fully focused on boxing and family.”
Spence’s skeptics question whether the strong southpaw will be the same elite fighter once he returns. Those doubts have motivated him even more while preparing for his first fight since Spence (26-0, 21 KOs) defeated Shawn Porter by split decision in their 12-round welterweight title unification fight September 28 at Staples Center in Los Angeles.
“I am excited for it,” Spence said. “I’m glad it’s finally coming back. Like I said, I got a second chance, so I’m not taking it for granted at all, and I’m not taking this opportunity for granted at all. And I just wanna show the world that, you know, Errol Spence is still the same. Not the same – I’m even better. I’m more improved and stuff like that.”
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.