Oscar De La Hoya continues to find creative ways to draw attention to himself and his promotional empire.
The latest trick by the Hall of Fame former six-division champ and chairman of Golden Boy Promotions was the suggestion of bringing WBO welterweight champion Terence ‘Bud’ Crawford to the Los Angeles-headquartered company. The pre-fight buildup to Golden Boy’s first DAZN show of 2023 included a now viral social media-posted image of De La Hoya, Crawford and Hall of Fame former two-division champ Bernard Hopkins captioned, ‘Big things brewing… #StayTuned.’
Little clarification was offered as to what actually took place during such a meeting.
“Future plans for Terence Crawford,” De La Hoya told DAZN’s Chris Mannix prior to Saturday’s main event at YouTube Theater in Inglewood, California. “He wants to fight the big fights, against Errol Spence. I told him, ‘We can make that fight happen. Ryan Garcia versus Tank Davis is going to open a lot of doors for us that will lead to us doing business with PBC (Premier Boxing Champions).
“I told Crawford, ‘Let us present to you a schedule of fights leading up to Spence.’ I have all the confidence in the world that Crawford versus Spence will happen.”
Such a fight sadly remains a mythical matchup for the moment. Crawford (39-0, 30KOs) was for months engaged in deep talks for an undisputed welterweight championship versus WBA/WBC/IBF champ Errol Spence Jr. (28-0. 22KOs). The line would move whenever it appeared that the superfight would inch closer to becoming a done deal, only for the plans to collapse altogether last October.
Crawford went on to defend his WBO title in a sixth-round knockout of David Avanesyan last December 10 in his hometown of Omaha, Nebraska.
The fight headlined a BLK Prime Pay-Per-View event, though Crawford only signed a one-fight deal with the rookie startup outfit, following a bitter split with Top Rank who promoted the switch-hitting three-division champ from 2011 through the end of 2021. Crawford declared his free agent status while also launching a breach of contract lawsuit against Top Rank which will go to trial before a Clark County, Nevada jury but not before 2024.
De La Hoya is keen on landing the services of the high-ranking pound-for-pound entrant, as Golden Boy has several welterweights to throw his way. Among them is Alexis Rocha (22-1, 14KOs), a 25-year-old southpaw from Santa Ana, California who picked up his sixth straight victory with a seventh-round knockout of George Ashie atop Saturday’s DAZN main event.
Rocha is the highest ranked available challenger to Crawford’s WBO title. Vergil Ortiz Jr. (19-0, 19KOs)—also promoted by Golden Boy—and former unified welterweight titlist Keith Thurman (30-1, 22KOs) are both occupied with other fights later this spring. That leaves the number-three ranked Rocha in prime position to challenge for his first major title, another deal De La Hoya is confident that he can close.
“We did discuss a Rocha fight,” revealed De La Hoya. “I think it’s a big possibility. He’s number three in the world. Rocha versus Crawford, who knows.”
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox
ADD COMMENT VIEW COMMENTS (108)