Errol Spence Jr. isn’t worried what will happen the first time he is allowed to spar since suffering serious injuries in a scary car accident 6½ months ago.
Spence has been working hard in Dallas, so that he is in shape when the time comes for him to begin training camp for his first post-coronavirus fight later this year. The IBF/WBC welterweight champion still doesn’t know, however, when he’ll be cleared to spar.
That can’t happen until Spence has the three posts in his mouth replaced with permanent teeth. Spence openly discussed the damage done to his mouth during the newest episode of Showtime’s “All The Smoke” podcast, which premiered on Showtime Sports’ YouTube channel Tuesday.
“I have no restrictions in my training except sparring,” Spence told co-hosts and former NBA players Matt Barnes and Stephen Jackson. “I can’t spar yet because I got my teeth knocked out. And they put two posts in my mouth, well, three posts in my mouth. And I’m waiting on them to heal. And once they heal, then I’ll get my permanent teeth. And then I’ll be able to spar.”
Spence sustained cuts to his face and dental damage as a result of a one-car accident in the early morning hours of October 10 in downtown Dallas.
The 30-year-old Spence, of DeSoto, Texas, was ejected from his Ferrari, which flipped over multiple times in the accident. Spence was charged with driving while intoxicated after he was released the following week from Methodist Dallas Medical Center, where he spent time in its intensive care unit.
The 2012 Olympian reiterated to Barnes and Jackson that he feels lucky to be alive. Spence expects to return to the ring in October or November, but he hasn’t secured a date or an opponent because the COVID-19 pandemic has caused so much uncertainty within the boxing business.
Nevertheless, Spence (26-0, 21 KOs) has tried to use this time of self-isolation wisely by working with trainer Derrick James at James’ gym.
“In all actuality, this pandemic has really been helping me out a lot, yeah, basically [with] recovery and just taking my time to get back,” Spence said. “But I’m already back. I’m a hundred percent. I went to a facility in Cleveland, where they checked me out, checked my brain, gave me MRIs and things like that, and everything went well. So, everything’s been going good. I think I’m 100-percent healthy and in shape.”
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.