WBO welterweight titleholder Terence Crawford is not leaving ESPN and Top Rank anytime soon.
Crawford, a former undisputed junior welterweight champion, has signed a multi-year extension on his current deal to stay with Bob Arum's Top Rank Boxing, insuring ESPN will keep one of its top boxing stars for a long time.
The deal gives Crawford a stable television home to fight and will look to hopefully one day become an undisputed champion once more, only this time at 147 pounds. Financial details were disclosed, but it is said to be one of the most lucrative deals in boxing today.
"I am the best fighter in the world, hands down. ESPN is the biggest brand in sports and Top Rank is the biggest promotional company in boxing. This was a no-brainer for me and my team. All of the super fights that the world wants to see will happen. Mark my words. Like I've said before, I want all of the champions in the welterweight division," Crawford said in a press release.
Those dreams of becoming undisputed champion may be a bit tough to achieve at this moment as none of the other welterweight champions are signed to Top Rank. WBA "regular" welterweight champion Manny Pacquiao's deal with Top Rank expired and other titleholders such as Errol Spence Jr. (IBF) and Keith Thurman (WBA "super") have been fighting on Showtime and PBC as well as other networks such as CBS.
A PBC-Top Rank partnership to have its welterweight champions unify has been an idea thrown around before, but never seriously explored, especially now that PBC has signed separate landmark, multi-year deals with Showtime and FOX.
These new deals followed ESPN's own broadcast partnership with Top Rank, which was extended to seven years back in August, which guarantees the network will get to televise stars such as Crawford, WBA lightweight champion Vasiliy Lomachenko and WBO super bantamweight champion Isaac Dogboe.
Crawford has been a mainstay at Top Rank for years. Undefeated in 33 pro fights, Crawford has also won all 11 of his career world title fights. Crawford became a three-division world champion this past June when he got a ninth-round TKO win over Jeff Horn to win the WBO welterweight title.