Crawford calls out Spence | ‘He was not as tough…’

Terence Crawford gave a clear message he wants to finally fight his great rival Errol Spence Jr, after being tipped as the better fighter by Shawn Porter.

Crawford retained his WBO welterweight championship and his status as one of the world’s best fighters by becoming the first man to stop Porter on Saturday night in Las Vegas.

Porter, the former two-time champion who has now retired, had a sensational scrap with Spence Jr but lost a split decision for the IBF and WBC belts in 2019.

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Terence Crawford did what no one had done before when he stopped Shawn Porter

Porter said about Crawford: “There’s no doubt that man hit me more than anybody I’ve been in the ring with.

“The fight with Spence Jr which went 12 rounds was not as tough as the fight with Crawford.”

Crawford delivered an ominous declaration that he wants to end his stand-off with Spence Jr – the two unbeaten American champions have been on a collision course for years but negotiations have never come close to producing the desired result.

Spence Jr was ringside on Saturday night to watch Crawford but shook his head disparagingly and left the venue during the finish to the fight.

“He was at my fight? That boy said he would never come to my fight but now he’s at my fight,” Crawford said.

“You saw what I did compared to what he did [against Porter].

“Who’s No 1 in the welterweight division now?

“You all know who I want. I’ve been calling him out. Maybe I’ll go up to 154lbs.

“Maybe Spence Jr will fight me.”

Errol Spence
Image: Errol Spence Jr unified the IBF and WBC belts by beating Shawn Porter

Crawford insisted his legacy as one of the best fighters in the world isn’t reliant on the dream fight with his long-time rival.

“I don’t need Spence Jr,” he said. “I’ve been the No 1 guy in the division since I came here.

“I’m a three-weight world champion, and undisputed world champion, I came to the welterweight division and won a title in my first fight.”

Spence Jr was left in a critical condition after a car crash in 2019. This year he was forced to withdraw from facing Manny Pacquiao due to a serious eye injury, and he has no comeback scheduled yet.

Crawford is undefeated in 38 fights with 29 knockouts – his last nine fights have all been won by stoppage.

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Shawn Porter admitted he did not have a conversation with his father about ending the fight early and did not expect it

He insisted that he knew immediately how to break down Porter, who had never been previously stopped in a 36-fight career that earned him two reigns as world champion.

Porter was withdrawn by his father and trainer after two knock-downs in the 10th round.

“Round one,” Crawford said. “I had the reach. He had to take chances to get in. I was a little stronger.

“He tried to do what he usually does but I used angles.

“Porter is a good fighter. He made me think.

“I saw in his face that he was hurt. His dad did the right thing because I was coming with a vengeance.”

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Kenny Porter says he decided to stop the fight as he believed his son had not prepared properly

Sky Sports Boxing schedule

December 11 – BOXXER in Cardiff
Chris Eubank Jr vs Liam Williams
Claressa Shields vs Ema Kozin

December 11 – Top Rank in New York
Vasiliy Lomachenko vs Richard Commey
Jared Anderson vs Oleksandr Teslenko
Nico Ali Walsh
Xander Zayas

December 17 – Top Rank in Montreal
Artur Beterbiev vs Marcus Browne – IBF and WBC light-heavyweight titles

February 26 – Top Rank in Glasgow
Josh Taylor vs Jack Catterall – undisputed super-lightweight title

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