In a big surprise, WBO welterweight champ Terence Crawford has filed a lawsuit in Nevada against his former promoter Bob Arum and his first-tier company, alleging racial bias against him. Crawford was signed with Top Rank from 2011 until his contract expired two months ago.
Arum claims Crawford’s lawsuit is “a blackmail attempt on his part and ‘frivolous,'” according to ESPN. According to Arum, Crawford’s failure to build his name is due to his inability to market himself.
Crawford, 34, is no longer signed with Top Rank after his contract expired last November with his fight against Sean Porter on the ESPN PPV.
The New York Post published the story earlier today. If Crawford wins his lawsuit, he could net $5.4 million to $10 million.
Despite possessing plenty of talent and winning three-division world titles, Crawford failed to become a major pay-per-show star like Floyd Mayweather Jr., Manny Pacquiao and Canelo Alvarez.
Crawford is ranked No. 2 pound-for-pound with Ring Magainze and is seen as the No. 1 welterweight. However, his fights failed to attract much attention for whatever reason.
He did not fight the required star opposition, is a counter hitter and is not easy to hit. In the past, fighters who usually became huge stars brought drama due to their aggressive methods, strength and sometimes porous defense.
“Bud Crawford’s lawsuit against Toprank is frivolous,” Arum told ESPN. “His vile accusations of racism are reckless and untenable. He knows this and his attorney knows him. I have spent my entire working life as a champion for black boxers, Latino boxers, and other boxers of color. I have no doubt that the court will hear Crawford’s case in connection with the malicious extortion attempt” .
Crawford isn’t easy to hit, and with a counterattack, he was rarely the one to start the attack. His martial style might have ultimately prevented him from becoming so famous.
Is it because of no trying on Top Rank’s part that Crawford fail to get the big fights and attract many PPVs for his competitions or is his fighting style unattractive to fans, promoters and other fighters?
It’s easy to understand why Crawford’s few fights for PPV failed to bring in so many buys. He was facing the wrong people for selling PPV.
Crawford’s three PPV fights were against these fighters: Sean Porter, Amir Khan and Victor Postol. There was no way to sell Crawford or any boxer on a PPV fight Postol and Khan.
By the time Crawford Porter fought on the PPV, he had already been beaten up by Errol Spence Jr., Kell Brook, and Keith Thurman, and some fans saw him as a bouncer. Porter is no longer a big enough name to be a staunch opponent for Crawford to fight on the PPV, which is why it failed to fetch huge numbers.
Crawford’s attorney, Brian Friedman, worked with Mickey Garcia in his suit with Top Rank in 2014.
“Unlike other boxers with first-class contracts, Terence can corroborate his claims in court without being forced to sit down by Top Rank,” Friedman said. “
Arum’s final comment that he “could build a house in Beverly Hills with the money I lost on it in the last three battles.”
According to ESPN, this comment from Arum could be interpreted as discrediting Crawford and damaging his reputation and the possibility of him being signed by another promotional firm after he left Top Rank.
Arum said the Spence-Crawford fight didn’t happen because of the enormous baggage that both fighters ensured this match would take place. He says Crawford and Spence wanted $9-10 million for their engagement, but Arum didn’t know who would put that kind of dough on.
“Spence wants a lot of money for the fight, and so does Terence, and who’s going to put that money in — $9 or $10 million a piece, and how are you going to make that money?” Arum told the New York Post.