Are Errol Spence and Trainer Derrick James Splitting Up?



Are Errol Spence and Trainer Derrick James Splitting Up?

Errol Spence and Derrick James were thought to be one of those fighter-trainer relationships which would withstand the rigors of time and over-familiarity. It feels like that presumption might have been erroneous, though.

Take a peep at these X posts from the 34 year old Texan Errol Spence, last seen getting owned by Terence Crawford in their July 29, 2023 welterweight clash.

Errol Spence might be on the outs with Derrick James

Errol Spence tweeted out some interesting stuff this week

Understandably, the 28-1 hitter, who turned pro with James after doing the 2012 Olympics, has taken some time to sift his options.

I asked James, an ex pro, if Errol Spence is getting a new trainer. He replied:

I have no idea,” the 52 year old tutor replied.

OK, what’s he talking about, “a new home?”

Score one for James, offering a clever defensive maneuver. “Who knows? Rich people always buying new houses,” he said, portion of tongue in cheek.

Seriously, who knows.

Errol Spence and Derrick James

Derrick and Errol back in the day

Still Together? Errol Spence and Derrick James Union Is Being Tested

Those guys do and we aren’t privy to their inner goings on. But it is clear, this period continues to be a time of transition for Errol Spence.

It can’t be easy, mulling the future after taking a beat-down like that.

One would be bound to wonder if they still had it. Or, if they’ve decided they do, they might wonder if they might have better luck with a different “co pilot.”

It would be hard to imagine Errol Spence returning to the ring without James as head trainer.

But to be honest, boxer-trainer relationships are like Hollywood hookups.

Errol Spence

The mystery got play on Boxing Scene

When things are going good, it’s all roses and Champagne.

When hard times arrive, that’s when it gets dicey. Who remembers the Bernard Hopkins-Bouie Fischer split?

It’s not like a marriage, it is a marriage, of sorts.

That analogy isn’t perfect, though, because there are other elements which can affect the union.

James has a full plate, even if Errol Spence is/were to switch allegiance to another teacher.

James definitely is working with Frank Martin

The 2022 Boxing Writers Association of America trainer of the year has had a bit of a full plate of “drama,” shall we say, with some of his clients. Anthony Joshua, Errol Spence, Ryan Garcia, these are three ultra high profile guys with lots on their mind.

There are different partners, personalities and agendas in the mix and as of right now, the mix feels a bit volatile.

I said to James, OK, what can I report? That Derrick James and Ryan Garcia are working together smoothly, for Ryan’s April 20 faceoff with Devin Haney in Brooklyn? 

“No comment,” James answered.

Marriages are challenging.

Founder/editor Michael Woods got addicted to boxing in 1990, when Buster Douglas shocked the world with his demolition of the then-impregnable Mike Tyson. The Brooklyn-based journalist has covered the sport since for ESPN The Magazine,, Bad Left Hook and RING. His journalism career started with NY Newsday in 1999. Michael Woods is also an accomplished blow by blow and color man, having done work for Top Rank, DiBella Entertainment, EPIX, and for Facebook Fightnight Live, since 2017.