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Terence Crawford Gets Real on Corruption, Contracts & Breaking the Bank in Boxing

Last Updated: August 22, 2023
Boxing’s pound-for-pound king got candid about how money really flows through the fight game on Boardroom’s “Out of Office” with Rich Kleiman.

When the subject turned to the messy, chaotic business of boxing, Terence Crawford put it bluntly.

“Boxing is one of the most corrupt sports there is,” the undisputed welterweight champion told Rich Kleiman on the latest episode of Boardroom’s “Out of Office.”

Click here to listen to the full episode.

“We’ll take a $5 million guarantee not knowing that there’s $30 million that we missed,” Bud said, admitting that he used to trust the process of contract negotiations without being so hands-on himself.

“I used to be that guy. ‘Let me take this [money] and just do my job. Let me sign this contract and get this guarantee.’ But once you get older and once you start noticing that you’re in control of your own business, ‘Okay, so, let me see the contracts. Let me see what’s really coming in,'” he said.

As soon as Bud took that greater level of control over his own fight finances, he saw a problematic pattern that rarely placed the fighters first.

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“Once I started asking those type of questions or learning a little bit here and there, then it became a problem between me and my old promoter,” he said in reference to Bob Arum’s Top Rank, “and at that point in time, I knew it was time to go.”

But Crawford didn’t just leave the Top Rank stable for enigmatic manager Al Haymon’s Premier Boxing Champions. Since PBC is technically an event series rather than a promotion — Haymon is a manager and federal law says he can’t also promote — the undisputed champ is taking after Floyd Mayweather and getting into the business for himself.

After all, no one has the luxury of pretending that’s not where the real money is made in the sport of boxing.

“I don’t see [Floyd] trying to give the game to the younger fighters because he’s a promoter now. I can’t give everybody the game if I’m one of them now,” Bud said.

Poetically enough, Al Haymon famously managed Mayweather before the all-time legend ascended to become a billion-dollar industry unto himself.

“It’s a business at the end of the day. So, if they made all this money on our backs as fighters and now I’m a promoter, I’m gonna do the same thing that they once was doing and just say, ‘It’s just the game of the business.'”

Click here to listen and subscribe to Boardroom’s “Out of Office” with Rich Kleiman and “The ETCs” with Kevin Durant and Eddie Gonzalez.

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About The Author
Sam Dunn
Sam Dunn
Sam Dunn is the Managing Editor of Boardroom. Before joining the team, he was an editor and multimedia talent for several sports and culture verticals at Minute Media and an editor, reporter, and site manager at SB Nation. A specialist in content strategy, copywriting, and SEO, he has additionally worked as a digital consultant in the corporate services, retail, and tech industries. He cannot be expected to be impartial on any matter regarding the Florida Gators or Atlanta Braves. Follow him on Twitter @RealFakeSamDunn.