The welterweight division will get one more blockbuster fight before 2021 is over.
Terence Crawford and Shawn Porter have stuck a deal for a welterweight title fight on Nov. 20 at Las Vegas’ Mandalay Bay on ESPN+ PPV, multiple sources tell @MikeCoppinger. @TRBoxing will promote and lead the event in association with PBC. pic.twitter.com/GR6VPwVlk1
— ESPN Ringside (@ESPNRingside) September 14, 2021
Top Rank will reportedly promote the event in conjunction with Premier Boxing Champions.
The WBO granted an extension when Top Rank and TGB Promotions, which works on behalf of Premier Boxing Champions, asked for a delay of the original Sept. 2 purse bid date, leading to the Sept. 14 date.
A purse bid is an initial step in arranging a professional boxing match involving the fight’s/card’s promoter. All interested registered promoters may bid on the amount of the purse if the sides representing each fighter disagree on it before the deadline.
Crawford (37-0, 28 KOs) is signed to Top Rank, while Shawn Porter (31-3-1, 17 KOs) is under contract with Premier Boxing Champions. Crawford is the current WBO welterweight champion, and Porter is the No. 1 contender for that title.
📋 Come Nov 20th, Shawn Porter will have shared the ring with…
🥊 Devon Alexander
🥊 Kell Brook
🥊 Adrien Broner
🥊 Keith Thurman
🥊 Danny Garcia
🥊 Yordenis Ugas
🥊 Errol Spence
🥊 Terence Crawford
💬 He hasn't won them all, but that's an unmatched CV of modern welterweights.
— Michael Benson (@MichaelBensonn) September 14, 2021
Porter is a former two-time world titleholder who held the WBC welterweight belt. The fight answers the lingering question hovering over Crawford’s head of why he hasn’t fought anyone substantial. Porter is one of the top welterweights in the world.
According to Yahoo! Sports, Top Rank President Todd duBoef said the event would be on ESPN+ pay-per-view.
However, duBoef said negotiations are ongoing to determine if it will be available on cable and satellite systems. Top Rank has an exclusive deal with ESPN+, but Premier Boxing Champions has agreements with Showtime and Fox Sports.
Making Amends With “Bud”
Top Rank Founder and Chairman Bob Arum had a strained relationship with Crawford as of late.
In the days leading up to his last fight against Kell Brook back in November 2020, Crawford said, “If he feels that way, he can release me now,” after Arum described his frustrations promoting Crawford.
Bob Arum on Terence Crawford: “He’s got to promote like Lopez does, Shakur does. Like Mayweather did, Pacquiao did. If he doesn’t, then who the f*** needs him? He may be the greatest fighter in the world, but hey, I ain’t going bankrupt promoting him.” [@TheAthleticBOX]
— Michael Benson (@MichaelBensonn) November 15, 2020
“He’s got to promote like [Teofimo] Lopez does,” Arum told The Athletic. “He’s got to promote like Shakur [Stevenson] does. Like [Floyd] Mayweather did. Like [Manny] Pacquiao did.
“If he doesn’t, then who the f— needs him? He may be the greatest fighter in the world, but, hey, I ain’t going bankrupt promoting him.
“The question is, ‘Do we want to keep him?’ I could build a house in Beverly Hills on the money I’ve lost on him in the last three fights. A beautiful home.”
Crawford’s signed to Top Rank for another two fights, and the fight with Porter is a step in the right direction to repair their relationship. If Top Rank can secure a fight with Errol Spence Jr. if Crawford is successful against Porter, it would cap his two-fight deal and be a perfect end to the journey with Top Rank.
However, rematch clauses are constantly employed in fights of this magnitude; Crawford would want to ensure he could run it back if he loses. Still, the fight is about respect both within the boxing business and amongst his promoter’s organization.
For Porter, the fight is about showing he can become a champion again, especially against a fighter of Crawford’s stature.
The fight represents a redemption story for the two of them.