Call Spence vs. Crawford official.
Both Errol Spence Jr. and Terence Crawford made weight during the official weigh-in well before noon in Las Vegas behind closed doors at the MGM Grand, with no media present. Spence Jr. weighed in at the 147-pound weight limit; Crawford at 146.8 pounds.
All fighters on the card also made weight. Four hours later, they all returned for a ceremonial weigh-in at the T-Mobile Arena. These events build buzz and give fans who may not have a ticket to Saturday night's card one final opportunity to see the athletes before fight night. It also allows observers to read the tea leaves.
Crawford walked onto the stage to Lil Wayne's “Mr. Carter,” fired up and singing the words to the delight of his fans. Spence Jr. slipped in with barely a wave.
As the pair stepped to the podium to face off, Spence Jr. leaned toward Crawford and was overheard saying, “You need to thank me for making this fight happen!” Crawford replied, “We can thank each other,” and the pair shook hands.
Later, Crawford thanked the crowd. “I appreciate everybody that's supporting this event, not only for myself, but for Errol Spence, too. You know, I mean, because this is what us high-class fighters deserve. We both put our lives on the line. You know, I mean, to entertain each and every one of y'all.”
Spence Jr. agreed. “Definitely man, it's beautiful. Just having people come out and supporting us is huge. Now it's time for me to put on a big show Saturday night.”
Spence Jr. expressed lingering irritation about Crawford winning the coin toss to determine who walks into the ring first on Saturday, saying he was the man responsible for making things happen and getting both men good paychecks.
There was one question both men answered the same. Asked what each needed to do to win on Saturday, Spence Jr. and Crawford said, “Be me.”
What's The Buzz?
Reporter Ryan O'Hara was inside the T-Mobile Arena to gauge the scene for NYFights.com.
“The energy inside the T-Mobile Arena was electric. The vibrations. The noise. The anticipation. The world is ready to see this fight; there's buzz, and we may potentially see Spence-Crawford perform better in the pay-per-view box office than initially thought.”
O'Hara got the following reaction from the pros present for the weigh-in.
Anthony Dirrell (former WBC super middleweight champion): “They both look tremendous. They both look like they're ready to fight. Spence looked a little bit bigger, but that doesn't matter. They both weighed [around] the same thing. It's a fight, man. I've been waiting on this fight for a long time, a lot of people have. We're gonna see tomorrow.
“A lot of people say 50-50 fights, but they [aren't]. This is actually a 50-50 fight. It's a toss-up. Both of them are champions. Both are in their primes. Both of them have been there and done it. Crawford was [undisputed] at 140. Who are you picking? One day you're here, one day you're there, it's just gonna be a hell of a fight.”
Jeff Mayweather: “I think it's a great fight. Either guy can win it, so I think whoever is able to [execute their game plan the best] will win the fight.”
Kieran Mulvaney, co-host of the Showtime Boxing podcast: “As good a fighter as Errol Spence and I think he's an excellent fighter and I think he's probably a Hall of Famer if he [retires] tomorrow, I have long felt that Terence Crawford is a generational talent. I just think he's got that extra something and I think he's going to show it tomorrow night.
“It's not going to be easy though. Spence is very, very good, and I think they have so much respect for each other, the first half of the fight is going to be very [technical]. The first half of the fight is going to be tense, maybe Spence will be ahead a little bit because Errol tends to fight his groove a little bit earlier.
“Once Terence does get himself sorted out, once he does get in the groove, once he figures out what works, I think he might start running away.”
However, Mulvaney did predict something that will make fans cringe.
“There will be at least one terrible scorecard. I think it will be a clear Bud Crawford win, but one judge will have it for Errol Spence. Split decision for Crawford.”
Hear From The Fans
O'Hara asked several fans for their hot takes.
Chill: Both fighters looked good on the scales. Both are in great shape and look ready for the fight. Both guys are ready to go. I'm a Bud Crawford fan. I want to see him come out victorious, but they're both great fighters, man. It's hard to even choose between the two of them. It's a 50-50 fight.
Francisco Marez, Panama “Terence Crawford by late knockout. Bud is special. He has been waiting on [this opportunity] for many years now, and he has been [analyzing] Spence. I have been to both of their fights; I follow both of them, and I think Crawford [will win].
Reporters Go Mano A Mano
O'Hara's take: It's a 50-50 fight by definition. I have Spence winning a close decision. Crawford has more tools at his disposal, but the three-belt titleholder is fundamentally sound. From my perspective, Tim Cheatham and Dave Moretti tend to favor fighters who have excellent fundamentals. As for David Sutherland, I can never really figure out his cards, so maybe we will see a split decision for Spence.
Falkentalk: Terence Crawford by decision. Consensus expectations see a close outcome in a chess match, not a brawl. Both men have the physical tools to win. The victor will be the man with the better game plan who can successfully impose it on his opponent. The edge goes to Crawford due to his exceptional ring IQ. He is observant and nimble-minded, bolstered by speed and footwork, allowing him to adjust when needed. When the going gets tough, Bud can draw down on a mean streak a mile wide to push him across the finish line. Spence Jr. will make it to the final bell but on the short end of the decision. At the end of the night, we'll all look forward to the rematch.
O'Hara said his biggest takeaway after spending the afternoon at the venue: “We have people that are here from all over the world, including Mexico and Panama. This is a good sign overall when it's not just the American sports world that is tuned in but the entire world. The fight of our generation is here!”
To order the fight: PPV.COM