By Dan Ambrose: Richarson Hitchins thinks Terence Crawford is “bluffing” about taking Jermell Charlo off his “hit list” due to the way he fought in his loss to Canelo Alvarez last September.
(Photo credit: Ryan Hafey/Premier Boxing Champions)
Hitchins says Crawford (40-0, 31 KOs) doesn’t have many options for the big payday fights he’s interested in before he retires.
The 36-year-old two-division undisputed champion Crawford says he only wants the high-paying fights from this point on, yet he’s limiting himself by ruling out contests against Jermell Charlo, Keith Thurman, and Jaron Ennis. With those guys off Crawford’s list, it leaves only Canelo Alvarez.
Crawford has practically been begging for a chance to challenge Canelo Alvarez for his undisputed championship at 168, but that fight doesn’t appear in the cards.
Canelo has rejected it as one that he’s not interested in. If Crawford were willing to put his unbeaten record at risk by moving up to 168 to fight David Benavidez and/or David Morrell Jr, Canelo might change his mind about fighting him, but Terence isn’t bold enough to fight either of those two.
He obviously knows his limitations. The fact that Crawford won’t even attempt to prove himself at 168 makes it clear that he only sees Canelo as a retirement payday.
“No, I feel like I feel like he’s definitely on Crawford’s hit list because Crawford doesn’t really have that many options in boxing right now,” said Richardson Hitchins to MillCity Boxing about Jermell Charlo still being on Terence Crawford’s hit list, despite the Nebraska native staying that he was no longer interested in fighting him after his loss to Canelo Alvarez.
“I feel like Crawford doesn’t have that many options. He and Errol Spence fight again, which he claims he really doesn’t care for any more or whatever. He and Errol Spence fight. He needs that rematch; they got a contract.
“Then if you don’t fight Canelo, you’re going to go to 154 to fight who? You want them belts. That’s what you want. You want a legacy, right? That’s a big fight [Crawford vs. Jermell Charlo] for him to possibly be undisputed again. That would be great.
“So, I think Crawford is bluffing. He definitely has Charlo on his hit list. That’s one of the two options he’s got before he leaves the sport. It’s Canelo, Jermell Charlo, or Spence rematch, and, if not, Boots [Ennis]. That’s the only fights he’s going to see.”
Crawford might not have been bluffing at first when he said he was taking Jermell off his hit list. He likely said it in the spur of the moment, reacting with disgust with Jermell’s performance against Canelo. But after realizing that he has almost zero options, Crawford has changed his mind and now wants/needs the Jermell fight to get a payday if Canelo won’t give him the handout.
“It would be dope to see him [Crawford] fight [Jaron Ennis], but I don’t see it happening, Boots & Crawford,” said Hitchins. “Boots hasn’t even won a world title yet. So Crawford is in a lose-lose situation if he wins that fight or lose that fight.
“I would definitely want to see Crawford at 154. I want to see him fight Charlo or Tim Tszyu.
“I don’t see Canelo fighting Crawford next. Canelo would be criticized. You’re fighting dudes way smaller than you. Nobody wants to see that. Crawford has got to rematch Errol Spence because Errol Spence definitely wants that payday again.
“Errol Spence probably thinks he can beat him. I feel like Errol was off. Something had to be off with Errol. I don’t believe that was the
Erol Spence that I’m used to seeing.
From the locker room to hitting the pads and everything. I told Gervonta, ‘Errol look slow as f**k. Why does he look like that on the pads?’ He just looked different that night,” said Hitchins.