By Chris Williams: Terence Crawford’s teammate Steven Nelson says Jaron ‘Boots’ Ennis lacks the following and experience for him to fight Bud.
Whether Nelson thinks Boots Ennis (31-0, 28 KOs) is worthy of a fight with the undisputed welterweight champion Crawford or not, he’s his IBF mandatory, and the rules are rules.
Crawford & Nelson may not like the Boots Ennis fight from a business perspective, but Bud wants to hold onto his IBF title; he will need to defend that belt.
The IBF title isn’t a keepsake like an old locket that Crawford holds onto forever & passes down from generation to generation. Boxing is a sport, not just a situation where a champion gets to fight whoever he pleases without ever having to face a mandatory.
If it were like that, we’d have champions that would hold onto their belts into their 50s or 60s, as they would select easy marks exclusively and milk their titles until they’re ready for a rocking chair or old folks home.
Hopefully, Crawford has forgotten that he’s going to need to defend his IBF belt against Boots because that belt is going to be stripped if he doesn’t face him soon.
“Boots is a young talented kid, but he doesn’t have the experience and the following to talk on Bud’s level,” said Steven Nelson to Marko boxing on why Jaron ‘Boots’ Ennis is an option for Terence Crawford to fight.
If Crawford’s attitude about Ennis is the same as Nelson’s, then he needs to unburden himself of the IBF title so that he’s not required to face him.
Crawford can then face whoever he wants until the other three sanctioning bodies at 147 get around to ordering him to fight one of their contenders, which probably won’t please him because there are no big names now that he’s chosen not to fight Keith Thurman.
“People are like, ‘He’s ducking.’ You’re talking about a guy that fights for a living that has been fighting since he was seven,” Nelson said about Crawford about why he shouldn’t have to defend his IBF title against his mandatory challenger Boots Ennis.
Well, it sure does look like Crawford is ducking Boots Ennis. If Crawford is willing to fight a less popular fighter than Boots, like Tim Tszyu, that has to be seen as a duck job on his part, and it’s understandable if he does.
I mean, Crawford is getting old at 36, the hairline is receding like a tide going out, and the last thing he needs is to face a young killer like Boots Ennis, who would make him look his age.
“He’s [Crawford] accomplished everything up and down the ranks is scared to fight an up & coming fighter. At this point, it’s about business. That’s why an Errol Spence rematch is not profitable.
“Bud is not fighting about legacy anymore. He already did that. Now it’s about the bag. What is Boots going to bring to the table to be like, ‘Okay, this is going to be.’ Is this going to please people who are doubting Bud again, who jumped from Spence, and now they’re using Boots? So is it worth it?
“If that fight don’t come forth, what are you going to do?” said Nelson when asked who will Crawford fight if he doesn’t get Canelo or Jermell Charlo because they’re busy fighting a rematch.
“With [Jermell] Charlo, one of his belts [WBO 154-lb] will be vacated [correction: stripped]. So maybe that fight because it’s for a belt [against the Tim Tszyu vs. Brian Mendoza winner of their October 15th fight].
“If he’s [Crawford] fighting Errol at 154 for nothing, it’s a waste of time, but if you fight Tim at 154 for a belt, now he has 147 and a belt at 154, he’s a four-weight champion.
“Plus, he can wait for Charlo to get done with Canelo, and he has the other three belts [at 154]. Now you can fight because he’ll probably be mandatory. Now he has three belts waiting for him [Crawford]. He waited for him [Jermell]. Now I want undisputed.”
Hopefully, Crawford is sitting back, pining away for a fight that will never happen against Canelo Alvarez, as the Mexican star has said in his best English that he’s NOT interested in fighting Crawford.
Perhaps there’s a failure in communication with Crawford not understanding Canelo through his thick accent, but Chris Williams heard the Mexican star clearly say he’s not interested in that fight.
Crawford needs to hear what Canelo is saying because he seems to be desperate and way too needy, like someone who doesn’t want to hear the truth.
“He’s got to honor the contract,” said Nelson about Crawford having no choice but to fight Spence if he agrees to fight him at 147. “Still, it’s a waste of time,” said Nelson about his belief that it’s a waste of time for Crawford to fight Spence again.
It doesn’t matter if Nelson sees it as a waste of time for Crawford to honor the contract for his rematch with Spence. That’s just the way it is. If Crawford had an issue with it, he shouldn’t have signed the contract because it’s too late now.