There certainly won’t be any drama when undefeated Ring Magazine No. 7 rated welterweight Errol “The Truth” Spence takes on 41 year old Leonard Bundu this Sunday night from the Ford Amphitheater in Coney Island, NY. The bout will be shown nationally on NBC after the closing Olympic ceremonies. Spence is a huge 100-1 favorite that has knocked out 17 of his 20 opponents, including seven straight.
The significance of this fight has nothing to do with the fight itself, but with details outside the squared circle. That’s where things get interesting as there will be an important question that should be closer to being answered. Will a Top Rank promoted fighter be matched with an Al Haymon managed fighter? That hasn’t happened yet, which has kept some promising fights from happening.
When Spence, who is managed by Haymon, wins on Sunday, he will be the mandatory challenger for IBF Welterweight champion Kell Brook. While Brook hasn’t vacated his title as of yet, he has moved up to middleweight to fight GGG on Sept 10th. It’s not impossible that Brook will move back to welterweight after his fight, but it’s highly unlikely given his struggle to make the 147 pound limit. At the 30 day out weigh in, Brook tipped the scales at 176 pounds, further implying his permanent move up in weight.
What this all means is that Brook is going to end up vacating his title, which would result in Spence having to face another fighter for the vacant strap. When looking over the IBF welterweight rankings, the fighter ranked just below Spence is Konstantin Ponomarev, who just so happens to be promoted by Top Rank, and who would be the most logical matchup to fill the IBF’s vacancy. There’s no excuse for those two not to be matched up as Ponomarv last fought on April 9th and doesn’t have another fight scheduled.
If those two don’t get matched together next, that will further show that Bob Arum (CEO of Top Rank) and Haymon still cannot co-exhist enough to put some great matches on for the public.
I’d put my money on that fight not happening and instead would be willing to bet that Spence takes on Haymon managed, Lamont Peterson, who is ranked No. 5 by the IBF. Peterson also is available as he hasn’t fought since last October and there wouldn’t be a conflict between manager and promoter. Let’s all hope I’m wrong and that the feud between these two boxing power brokers can finally end.