A dream fight becomes a reality on Saturday night. A matchup that was once thought to be unattainable due to the politics of the sport finally comes to fruition, and the stakes couldn’t be higher for both Errol Spence Jr. and Terence Crawford. The two welterweight champions meet to crown the first four-belt king in the division’s storied history when they clash inside the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.
Spence, the WBC, WBA and IBF champion, enters the fight with a perfect 28-0 record. While he has only ever held a world title at welterweight, he has dominated the division against top-tier competition.
“People are going to talk about this fight 30 or 40 years from now when you talk about legendary fights,” Spence said on Thursday. “They’re going to talk about this fight the same way they talked about the ‘Four Kings’ era. There’s going to be an amateur 20 years from now watching our fight on YouTube and saying ‘man, I want to be in a fight like that.’
“I guarantee you it’s gonna be nothing but fireworks from start to finish.”
WBO champ Crawford is also undefeated at 39-0. He has held titles at other weight classes, however, holding the WBO title at lightweight before moving up to junior welterweight where he became undisputed champion. He now enters Saturday’s fight seeking to claim undisputed status again.
Can’t get enough boxing and MMA? Get the latest in the world of combat sports from two of the best in the business. Subscribe to Morning Kombat with Luke Thomas and Brian Campbell for the best analysis and in-depth news.
“[Spence] is going to find out the same thing that everyone else finds out. He’s going to say that on TV I look one way. In the ring he’s going be seeing three of me,” Crawford said. “They say he’s the big bad wolf, but come fight night we’re gonna find out if he’s all that he says he is. He’s going to have to show me.
“This is the Terence Crawford era. When you look at my body of work in each weight class, you can’t deny that. This is my era. I’ve never had a close fight. I’ve never had a fight where people thought I lost. I’ve looked spectacular every time.”
The fight does include a rematch clause, so Saturday night is just the start of the rivalry between these top pound-for-pound fighters. The intriguing twist on that potential rematch is that the winner will get to choose what weight it is contested at. Spence has said that the weight cut down to 147 pounds is as tough as it’s ever been and he plans to move up to 154 for his next fight. But if Crawford is successful on Saturday, he may have to do it one more time.
CBS Sports will also have live coverage of the fight with round-by-round scoring and blow-by-blow updates to keep you up to date throughout the night.
“There’s no more talking. Nothing else to say. My chant is, it’s time to eat. It’s time to make it happen. We’re tired of talking. It’s time to go. Show time,” Spence’s trainer Derrick James said.
“It takes a lot of fortitude, discipline and focus to win fights like this. Errol has that. He knows his time is on Saturday. We made this happen. We took every belt and beat champions to get here.”
With so much happening on Saturday night, let’s take a closer look at the full fight card with the latest odds from Caesars Sportsbook before we get to our staff predictions and picks for the PPV portion of the festivities.
Spence vs. Crawford fight card, odds
Odds via Caesars Sportsbook
|Terence Crawford (c) -150||Errol Spence (c) +125||Undisputed welterweight title|
|Isaac Cruz -700||Giovanni Cabrera +500||WBA lightweight title eliminator|
|Nonito Donaire -150||Alexandro Santiago +125||Vacant WBC bantamweight title|
|Sergio Garcia -125||Yoenis Tellez +105||Junior middleweights|
With such a massive main event on tap, the crew at CBS Sports went ahead with predictions and picks for the main event. Here are your pick makers: Brent Brookhouse (Combat sports writer), Brian Campbell (Combat sports writer, co-host of “Morning Kombat”), Luke Thomas (co-host of “Morning Kombat”), Michael Mormile (producer) and Brandon Wise (senior editor).
Spence vs. Crawford picks, predictions
|Brian Campbell||Spence via majority decision|
|Luke Thomas||Spence via decision|
|Brent Brookhouse||Spence via split decision|
|Michael Mormile||Crawford via TKO10|
|Brandon Wise||Spence via split decision|
Campbell: In a fight this close on paper between well-rounded and unbeaten champions, something has got to separate them. In this fight, it’s the chin and heavy pressure of Spence that will eventually get to Crawford, who has shown in the past that he can be hurt and even dropped. Crawford is the slicker of the two who may have more ways to win, but the one thing no other opponent has been able to do to Spence is stop his forward momentum. Unless Crawford can visibly hurt Spence and back him up early, there’s an inevitability to the idea that Spence’s educated pressure style will eventually catch up to Crawford, too, in an absolute thriller.
Brookhouse: This is a near impossible fight to pick. Spence and Crawford have separated them from the pack at welterweight and “the pack” is filled with legitimate competition. Spence’s pressure and proven ability to gut through a war while utilizing his dynamic offense could be a problem for Crawford, who has been hurt by worse fighters in his career. Spence’s inactivity, fighting just once since December 2020, would concern me more if he hadn’t looked every bit the force he always has been against Yordenis Ugas in April of last year. Crawford has more slickness and has been a little more active. I think there’s good reason why Crawford has maintained a slight edge as the betting favorite and it took until roughly one sentence ago for me to change my pick from a narrow Crawford win to a narrow Spence win, who I simply think will have the flashier, more eye-catching moments that get the judges to shade rounds in his favor in a very close fight.
Wise: As has been stated throughout the buildup to this epic clash, buckle up for 12 rounds of high-speed chess. Both of these guys posses devastating power, but they have also shown incredible chins while facing the best competition of this era at 147 pounds. While Crawford has built himself up through the lower weight classes and had little issues in each step up, it feels like this is finally where he meets his match. Spence has a rugged style where even if he gets clipped, he takes a step and bites down on the mouthpiece only to come back stronger. Unless Crawford is able to get inside early and frustrate Spence with his stance switching, it’s tough to imagine Spence won’t be able to control the ring a bit with his power as he disciplines Crawford on the way in.
Who wins Errol Spence Jr. vs. Terence Crawford, and which prop is a must-back? Visit SportsLine now to see Peter Kahn’s best bets for Saturday, all from the boxing specialist who has netted his followers a profit of nearly $4,000, and find out.