Next year is shaping up to be a very exciting year for the sport of boxing. With fights like Degale vs Jack, GGG vs Jacobs, Garcia vs Thurman, and Joshua vs Klitschko, 2017 may be one of the most interesting years the sport has had in a very long time. Throw in Canelo vs Chavez Jr, and you have a year that can potentially be a record breaking year for the sport. With that being said, Terence Crawford vs Manny Pacquiao is the perfect fight to make next year.
2016 has been a very impressive year for Terence Crawford. With TKO wins over Hank Lundy, Viktor Postol, and John Molina, he has a very strong case for fighter of the year for the second time. He is an undefeated champion with a very impressive record of 30 wins and 21 knockouts. After watching Crawford’s destruction of Molina, I could not help but ask myself if there was anyone in the light-welterweight division who could challenge him. Adrien Broner would be a compelling matchup, but I am uncertain if he would be able to beat him. The division has become so thin for him, that when speaking to Max Kellerman, he called out Ricky Burns. Yes, the same Ricky Burns he beat in 2014 for the WBO title. Granted, Ricky Burns is riding a four fight win streak, but nothing tells me that he will be able to beat Crawford if they were to fight again. This goes to my next point about Manny Pacquiao.
Manny is coming off a unanimous decision win over Jessie Vargas for the 147 pound WBO championship. While it wasn’t the destructive Manny we are used to seeing against the likes of Cotto, Margarito, and Hatton, it was still a very good performance. Coming off an extremely brief retirement, Manny showed that he can still hang with the young lions with his speed, movement, and punch volume. His fight also showed that he still has a fanbase that is willing to watch him fight young and hungry champions. From what I have heard, the fight surpassed over 300,000 PPV buys. If you consider that the most anticipated bout of Kovalev vs Ward did only 160,000 buys, that is a very impressive number. If Manny were to fight Crawford, a fighter who could be a real threat to him, I estimate the ppv numbers could do upwards of 500,000 buys. It is also a massive win-win situation for Top Rank, as they would profit from both fighters since they promote them.
As a boxing fan, I am thrilled with the 2017 boxing schedule. But, Crawford vs Pacquiao is a fight that would make next year’s schedule even more impressive. It is the most logical fight for both men as Mayweather looks like he is staying retired and Crawford seems to have cleaned out the 140 pound division. I am a big believer that there is never too much of a good thing. If that fight were to be made, it will prove that adage very true.