Terence Crawford: Team Pacquiao wants no piece?

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Lee Cleveland Updated
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In July, Hall of Fame promoter Bob Arum announced that Philippines Senator and eight division world champion Manny Pacquiao would face one of three possible opponents on November 5, Terence Crawford, Viktor Postol or Jessie Vargas.

Vargas was selected and Pacquiao conquered, to the surprise of few.

(Image courtesy of HBO Boxing)

And still, heading into 2017, Crawford is on Manny Pacquiao's (59-6-2, 38 KOs) short list of opponents.

Terence Crawford (29-0, 20 KOs), of course, faces John Molina Jr. on Saturday night and has been touted as a possible PacMan opponent for a year. But given Crawford campaigns at 140 lbs and Manny at 147lbs, Manny is obviously not mandated to fight him.

“We really thought we were gonna get that Manny Pacquiao fight,” Brian McIntyre, Crawford’s trainer, recently told BoxingScene.com.

“When it didn’t go through, I was like, ‘Wow!’"

Should McIntyre have been surprised?

Prior to Crawford's impressive win over Viktor Postol in July, Hall of Fame trainer Freddie Roach seemingly liked the idea of pitting his pupil against the crafty Crawford.

"My favorite fight for Manny is Terence Crawford," Freddie Roach told HoopJab in April 2016. "Manny's best fighting weight is at 140 pounds, and I think that's a great fight for us." -

But after Terence silenced Postol, Roach sang a different tune.

"I haven't had time to think about that, because Manny's in retirement right now and working in the Senate," stated Freddie Roach immediately following Postol's loss to Crawford.

"But I'm not sure what's next for Manny yet. We'll see...I don't know."


Jessie Vargas is a fine fighter but Crawford, at this point in their careers, is on another level.  The latter has a lot of tools, and Trainer Roach is obviously concerned Pacquiao's senatorial obligations might negatively impact his fighter's training and overall focus.

Can Manny get into the physical and emotional shape required to defeat a young, strong fella like Crawford?

Manny Pacquiao is looking for fight again in March or April. Will he finally face Crawford?

Last summer, fight legend Roy Jones Jr offered feedback on a potential Pacquiao vs Crawford showdown.

Should Pacquiao fight Terence?

"I don't think he should," Jones told ESNews. "I don't want to see Manny have to try and figure out that puzzle."

"Find someone else who is closer to your level right now."

"Don't fight a hungry young lion like this, who has everything to gain and nothing to lose. That's a crazy fight for Pacquiao."

Sometimes "crazy" isn't a bad thing but given Terence Crawford isn't mainstream yet, he may be too much risk for the reward as Manny could earn comparable revenue fighting a host of other less risky opponents.

Crawford faces John Molina Jr on HBO Boxing this Saturday night, December 10. Coverage starts at 9:35 PM ET.

 
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MANNY PACQUIAO

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