Keith Thurman isn’t too interested in feuding with an apparently aggrieved Terence Crawford. (photo by Ryan Hafey)
Crawford, the undisputed welterweight champion from Omaha, Nebraska, recently went off on a multi-post rant on social media, taking aim particularly at former welterweight titlists Thurman and Danny Garcia.
The tirade was seemingly sparked by interviews Thurman and Garcia gave in which they said they would welcome a fight with Crawford, who could not help but regard those comments with delicious irony.
“My my how the tables have turned,” Crawford wrote on X. “Y’all hoe asses didn’t want no smoke when I wanted to fight [re]member? Now y’all want to fight so bad. [three cry laughing emojis”]. Go keep fighting each other like b4.”
Crawford, a three-division titlist, has long dealt with criticism that his résumé at welterweight was relatively weak. A significant reason for that had to do with promotional gridlock; Crawford was promoted by Top Rank, which, aside from Crawford, did not have any other elite welterweights in its stable. Indeed, many of the top welterweights have long been aligned with Al Haymon’s Premier Boxing Champions, a rival outfit of Top Rank.
Crawford, who parted ways with Top Rank last year to become a free agent, silenced his numerous critics in July when he stopped Errol Spence Jr. in nine dominant rounds to unify all four belts in the 147-pound division. Spence activated his rematch clause with Crawford but it is not clear which weight and when the fight will take place.
In a recent interview, Thurman responded to Crawford’s claims, going so far as to discredit his win over Spence, who Thurman argued was in diminished form.
But Thurman, cognizant of Crawford’s resentment, made it clear he won’t lose any sleep if Crawford does not choose to fight him.
“Do what you want with your career,” Thurman told FightHubTV. “If you don’t ever want to fight me that’s fine. Spence never really wanted. You don’t really, really want it. That’s fine, man. This ain’t Leonard-Hearns, I guess. We ain’t in that real generation where anybody who’s really ‘bout it, is ‘bout it anymore. It’s fine, bro. Cash your check. Be king of Omaha, baby.
“I’m so blessed to witness greatness out of our generation, period. I’m proud of you, kid. I’m proud of you. That’s the thing that my meditation does. I don’t hold resentment in my heart no more. I ain’t hatin’ on y’all n----- no more. I got nothin’ to hate. I got love for you kid. I got love for you, I got gratitude, I’m grateful for everything, for living this life man. You don’t know how many people, man, are here today, gone tomorrow. Not just in the fight game, man, but in life. I just lost a real one three weeks ago. They just hosted his funeral, bro.
“Life is too short to hate on y’all man. Be good though. Be good. Be a powerhouse. Do what you want to do with your career man. You’re in a very, very blessed situation, man. Do what you want to do with your career. You know what I’m sayin’. Go after Canelo [Alvarez], make history, don’t fight the Dannys, don’t fight Thurmans, whatever kid. I’m a still active fighter. I love looking for the best fights. It’s not my fault you’re the best fight out there. Shoot. It’s your fault. Like I said, there was some political stuff back when you were with [Top Rank head] Bob [Arum]. You’re not with Bob anymore. You’ve now fought two PBC fighters, bro, but you still haven’t seen the one that is just a dog, bro.”
Thurman, who has not fought since outpointing Mario Barrios a year-and-a-half ago, was quick to lavish praise on Crawford for his performance against Spence.
“The way you dominated Spence—my favorite punch was that uppercut you dropped him with,” Thurman said. “That was my favorite punch of the whole fight. That’s where I gave you your new nickname, Crafty Crawford…. and then you just played the fundamentals, man, stuck him with the jab. I haven’t seen a jab land that many times since my mentor Winky Wright, OK? When Winky Wright beat Tito Trinidad, he made Trinidad look like a bobble head. He was beating Spence up with the jab…. Basics, fundamentals, ruthless, in-shape, there was a lot of great things I saw that night.
“But like I said, man, it is what it is, your legacy is your legacy, kid. You made it. You did it. Hall of Famer. It is up to you, kid, it’s up to you. There are a few other things, I have to see what I’m gonna do.”
Sean Nam is the author of Murder on Federal Street: Tyrone Everett, the Black Mafia, and the Last Golden Age of Philadelphia Boxing.