Arum: Crawford, Pacquiao bout far from finalized

Boxing

Top Rank CEO Bob Arum would like to make a fight between WBO welterweight titleholder Terence Crawford and WBA titlist Manny Pacquiao in the fall.

But Arum said it’s far from a done deal — despite some reports saying it’s close.

“Right now, all we’ve done is we’ve contacted Crawford and ‘BoMac’ [Brian McIntyre, Crawford’s manager/trainer], told them that they’ll fight in November, either the 14th or the 21st, and we’re looking at opponents,” the veteran promoter told ESPN on Wednesday.

“Obviously, if it’s Pacquiao and we can do the fight, which is a big ask because where am I going to put it? We can’t do it in the United States because there’s no crowds. So again, [some reports] that it’s Pacquiao and Crawford — it’s misleading.”

Sean Gibbons of MP Promotions also acknowledged that the fight is far from confirmed, saying of a reported agreement: “That’s news to me.”

Arum said he was also contacted by representatives for former welterweight titlist Kell Brook and believes that “there’s a lot of ways to go” with Crawford’s fight.

Arum broached the idea of making a Pacquiao-Crawford fight when both were previously under Top Rank. However, Pacquiao (62-7-2, 39 KOs) never seemed interested in facing Crawford.

Pacqiuao’s last couple of fights have come under the PBC banner, and in 2019 he defeated Adrien Broner and Keith Thurman.

The undefeated Crawford (36-0, 27 KOs) last fought Dec. 14, scoring a ninth-round TKO of Egidijus Kavaliauskas.

Arum is making plans for the upcoming months after staging fights inside “the bubble” at the MGM Grand Conference Center in Las Vegas from June 9 to July 21.

“We’re working on everything because what we know now is, starting mid-August, every week through the end of September, that’s booked. … If baseball goes down — and it looks like it might — then [ESPN] will probably ask us to do a fight show during the week, to go twice a week,” he said.

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