The most hyped boxing match of the year features Spence vs Crawford on Saturday, July 29, on Showtime Pay Per View.
A virtual press conference took place Thursday, spotlighting undercard attractions on the Premier Boxing Champions slate from T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.
The pay-per-view telecast begins at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT. Isaac “Pitbull” Cruz meets unbeaten Giovanni Cabrera in a 12-round WBC and WBA Lightweight Title Eliminator.
Also, Jesus “Mono” Ramos meets Spanish contender Sergio Garcia in a 12-round WBC Super Welterweight Title eliminator. Plus, heavyweight Gurgen Hovhannisyan fights Viktor Faust in the 10-round telecast opener.
Tickets for the Spence vs. Crawford live event, which is promoted by Man Down Promotions, TBC Promotions and TGB Promotions, are available through AXS.com.
Here is what the fighters had to say Thursday:
ISAAC CRUZ, Fighting on Spence vs Crawford Undercard
“I’m training hard as always and zeroing in on Giovanni Cabrera’s strengths and weaknesses. It’s an honor to be the co-main event of a fight that will be remembered forever in boxing lore.
“My plan is to go out there and put on a show for everyone watching. I’ll be ready. One round or 12 rounds, however long it lasts, it’s gonna be a great fight.
“I’m gonna put on a show against Cabrera. It’s all part of my effort to close every door that Gervonta has available to escape from facing me again. I want to prove that I’m the best at 135 pounds.
“I’m really excited to win this fight so I can get to the next level of what I want to achieve. Giovanni is a quality fighter and he’s undefeated for a reason. I’m definitely not overlooking him, because he’s earned this shot.
“The fans are extra motivation for me. I want to keep giving them spectacular fights. It fills me with joy and pride to see their support. I promise every single fan that this fight is gonna be worth the price of admission.
“He may think he’s faced fighters like me in the gym, but he better be ready, because facing the real thing is a lot different.
“I’m here to show everyone that I’m no social media fighter like some others are. I’m a dog, I’m a warrior and my ceiling is not even close to being hit yet.”
“I’m very happy to be here. I’ve finally arrived at the stage I’ve wanted to be at my entire career. Isaac Cruz is a great Mexican fighter and I’m a first-generation Mexican here in the U.S., so it’s gonna be fireworks. I think this might steal the show. I’m ready for my best performance yet.
“I believe he’s the best opponent I’ve faced. He has a strong will and a lot of fire. My plan is to meet that fire with my own.
“Cruz got his position from having a close fight with Gervonta Davis, so if he gets that merit, then if I defeat him convincingly, I’ll be right at the top too. I’ve shared the ring with his promoter Manny Pacquiao, so if I can dance with ‘Pac-Man’, I can dance with a ‘Pitbull’.
“My activity is definitely an advantage. I’ve been sparring great fighters at Wild Card Boxing Gym and I’m keeping sharp. This gym has the best fighters from all around the world.
“I’ve seen many examples of fighters with Isaac’s style. I’ve been able to out-class them. That’s the goal on July 29.
“I promise that we’re gonna leave Mexican boxing and American boxing on a high pedestal. You’re gonna see two warriors go at it and it’s gonna be fitting of the stage that we’re on.
“This is my time. Isaac Cruz is in trouble. I will be ready on July 29.”
JESUS RAMOS JR., fighting prior to Spence vs Crawford
“This is a huge opportunity for me and I’m very blessed. I’m working extremely hard. I’m facing a tough opponent who always comes to fight. I know he’s gonna be there and ready to fight for the whole 12 rounds.
“I think with a win over Sergio Garcia I’m top five, or at least top 10 in the division. I’ve been beating top guys and looking impressive against them. I want to earn my shot and these are the fights I have to take.
(Refresh yourself on Ramos, click and read this NYF Contender Alert story on Ramos by Abe Gonzalez.)
“The goal is a knockout, but I’m a more mature fighter now. I don’t put that pressure on myself. I just go out there and perform and do what I do best. I work hard every day and I have to demonstrate that. If the opportunity comes, I know how to finish.
“This is gonna be an exciting fight. He’s a fighter who comes forward and he’s gonna be there all night. That’s the kind of fight I like. I can brawl if I have to.
“As fighters we grow with each fight and mature. I’ve matured with every fight and I’ve acknowledged my mistakes. I go back into the gym and work on getting better and that’s what I’m gonna show on July 29.
“I’m motivated by any doubt that I receive. If they don’t consider me the top of the division yet, then it’s because I haven’t earned it. I’m going to keep working hard. A lot of people thought my last fight was a 50/50 matchup, and I went out there and showed that it wasn’t the case.”
SERGIO GARCIA, fighting before Spence vs Crawford
“I’m training in the U.K. with a new trainer in Angel Fernandez and we’ve been working really hard. I’m facing a young opponent who’s gonna give it his all, but I have the edge in experience and I’m gonna take advantage on July 29.
“I’ve been feeling great with my new trainer and the chemistry is outstanding. But this is really about me having a third chance in the U.S. I know that if this passes by me, I might not get another opportunity.
“I know that Ramos wants to show out and make it to the top of the division. I just have to focus on executing what I do in the ring. I’ve shown that I have courage, but now I have to show my skills as well.
“I can’t give away my secrets, but I have Jesus well scouted. I’ve been following him and I respect him. I know he’s been watching me too and that’s gonna make this a great fight.
“I may possess some tools that Jose doesn’t have. My fight against Tony Harrison was not my best night. I thought my fight with Sebastian Fundora could have gone either way. I’m going to take that experience and use it to come out on top.”
“My training is going really well. I’m very happy to be the opening fight on SHOWTIME PPV. I’m training really hard for July 29.
“I’ve known Viktor Faust since the amateurs and I looked up to him then. I’m very familiar with what he can do in the ring and I’m preparing to put on a great show. I’m very confident that I’m going to open this pay-per-view with an excellent performance.
“Spence vs. Crawford is gonna be the fight of the decade and that makes this a big step for me. A lot of people will be watching my performance and it’s very important for me to be on this card and perform well.
Boxing is more of a mental sport. I’ve learned a lot in that regard from being in the gym and sparring top fighters. With it being my fifth fight, that’s only a number to me. I’m prepared for this. It doesn’t matter to me how experienced my opponent is. I’m going to take on the fights with the best opponents.
“We do a lot more than 10 rounds of sparring when I’m training with Joe Goossen in the gym, so I’m not worried about going the distance if I have to. I’m more than ready.
“I’m not going to force the knockout, but if it comes, it comes. I’m just going to deliver beautiful boxing for everyone watching.”