Errol Spence Should Wait Before Fighting Crawford Again – Barry Hunter
By Sean Jones: Trainer Barry Hunter says he wants Errol Spence Jr. to take a tune-up fight or two before facing Terence Crawford in a rematch next year or later.
Hunter feels that the former unified welterweight champion Spence (28-1, 22 KOs) absorbed too much punishment in his ninth round TKO defeat against Crawford (40-0, 31 KOs) last month on July 29th, and it would be risky to face him right away in an immediate rematch without getting his mind right.
Key factors in Spence’s loss
1. 15-month layoff2. Weight drained: losing 40+ lbs in camp3. Remnants from a horrific car crash4. Past eye surgery
Barry agrees that moving up to 154 would be an excellent idea for the 33-year-old Spence because, with his large frame, he should be fighting at a different weight class at this stage of his career from the one he started his career at.
Hunter doesn’t say how long Spence should wait before fighting Crawford again, but two years would be a good idea. Let Spence move up to 168 and get two to four high-quality fights under his belt before looking in Crawford’s direction.
Crawford has moved up two weight classes from the division he started at fifteen years ago at 135, and he’d helped him. If Spence had done the same thing, he’d be fighting at 160 now, which is where Floyd Mayweather Jr. feels he should be fighting at, if not 168.
Spence likely won’t choose to move up to 160 or 168 for fear that Crawford would refuse and insist the rematch take place at 154, where he hopes to become the undisputed champion.
Although Crawford is eager to move up to 168 to fight the Canelo Alvarez vs. Jermell Charlo winner for the undisputed championship at super middleweight, he likely wouldn’t move up to that weight class for the rematch with Spence.
Errol couldn’t make adjustments
“The way he dominated that fight. Terence pretty much left that fight unscathed,” said trainer Barry Hunter to Fight Hub TV about Terence Crawford’s blowout of Errol Spence Jr. on July 29th.
“Because of our relationship with Spence, of course, you never want to see that because he’s special to us. Nevertheless, you have to be happy for Crawford as well, man, to pull off what he pulled off that night.
“The only man in history to do that. That’s big. I believe Terence Crawford is a generational type of talent and is about to hit that legendary status for sure.
“I don’t want to say that because that’s taking away from what Terence did that night. Had Errol won, nobody would have anything to say. I just think overall, he showed who he really is, and this is a guy [Crawford] that some slept on when he first started boxing, and he stayed the course.
“I wouldn’t want to put it out there that Errol didn’t train. I don’t know what he did. It’s been a while since I seen Errol. But on the flip side of that, I saw one [Crawford] make adjustments. He can fight inside, outside, he can box, he can bang, and Errol pretty much was the same pace with no adjustments. So I think that cost him,” said Hunter.
It doesn’t take an Einstein to see that Spence was badly weight drained for the fight with Crawford.
All you got to do is looked at Spence’s skeletal appearance during the weigh-in and note how weak, lethargic & slow he was for the fight to extrapolate from there that he was drained. It’s troubling that Hunter couldn’t see that himself.
“Who knows? It could have been a layoff or remnants of the car accident; you never know. But the reason why I didn’t want to say any of that is that he fought two reputable guys [Yordenis Ugas & Danny Garcia], and none of this was an issue. So I just think Terence Crawford is what he is,” said Barry.
Of course, Spence was dealing with a witch’s brew of the layoff, dramatic weight loss, and his terrible car crash. Put Crawford through the same ordeal and toss him in the ring with Spence, and the outcome would have been entirely different than the one we witnessed last July.
Spence should delay Crawford rematch
“If it were me, I would definitely wait,” Hunter said about Spence needing to wait before taking the rematch with Spence. “Had he [Errol] lost a tight competitive fight, that’s one thing, but to take the type of punishment he took, I would give him some time to let him recover from that.”
How long should Spence wait before fighting Crawford again? Sean Jones believes two years minimum would be ideal for Spence to wait before tangling with Crawford again, and only if he’s not weight drained or feeling the effects of his crash.
Wins Spence needs to reinvent himself at 168:
- David Benavidez
- Demetrius Andrade
- Caleb Plant
- David Morrell Jr.
“Maybe even take a bout or two in between before I go down that road again. You don’t want to see nobody get hurt bad or killed in this sport. What really stuck out for me in that fight as well is the accuracy of Crawford. Damn-near everything he threw; it landed, number one.
“Number two, there was an exchange on one of the knockdowns. Terence threw an uppercut, Errol countered with an overhand, and it landed clean. It didn’t even move him, and he turned around and threw a hook right off of that.
“So, I would definitely take time back. Go back and look at the film, talk to your team, go with what they think went wrong, evaluate that and evaluate him and then decide what you’re going to do. But I would definitely take a fight in between.
“Errol, he’s a big frame guy, and I think at 154, he’ll do just fine at 154. But I definitely wouldn’t jump back in the fire with Crawford again. Take some time, get your mind right. I would definitely fall back a little bit. Take time. There’s no rush. That’s what I would do.
Should Errol retire?
“When you take that type of punishment, a lot of time with the physical, you take a psychological whooping too,” Hunter said about Spence. “I don’t know if that’d be the case, but on the flip side of that, pride aside and all the rest of the garbage and what people say put all that aside.
“I would definitely reevaluate, and if he [Spence] has lost the love, if he has lost a step or two, then you may want to consider that [retirement]. But if the hunger’s still there and you are able to both physically and mentally deal with the situation, okay, so be it but take your time. Do it the right way.
“I think he could do it,” said Hunter when asked if Crawford can move up to 168 to challenge the winner of the Canelo Alvarez vs. Jermell Charlo for the undisputed championship at super middleweight. “Terence is that type of guy that it would be hard to bet against him. Do you feel me?
“You have to respect Charlo [or Canelo] at that weight. He’s been doing it for a long time and he’s one of the stars of boxing. So, he ain’t one of those guys that you can just in and take him lightly. That’s garbage. I definitely think Terence can move up for sure,” said Barry.
Don’t bet against Crawford
“It’s hard to bet against Terence,” said Hunter when asked if he’d favor him against Jermell Charlo at 168. “Whoever fights Terrence, you know you got to be prepared to deal with the fact that this man can turn up on a dime, and he makes adjustments so fast.
“The way his brain operates, he’s able to process information so fast and then react to it, and the only other one I see like that you know that comes to mind is Shakur Stevenson. That’s a rare trait to be able to process information that fast and react to it. It’s unbelievable,” said Hunter.