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Sunday, July 14, 2024

Terence Crawford Takes Aim at Boxing Corruption, Wants to Start Union 

  • Crawford wants to start a union for professional boxers to protect their wages and secure health, retirement benefits.
  • “Boxing is one of the most corrupted sports there is,” the undisputed champion said in an interview with Boardroom.
Boxer Terence Crawford wants to start a union to fight corruption in the sport.
Mandatory Credit: Sarah Stier-USA TODAY Sports

Welterweight champion Terence Crawford is calling for the start of a professional boxing union to help fighters secure benefits such as a 401K, pension plans, and health insurance.

“We don’t have a union, but there needs to be one,” Crawford told Bloomberg. “A lot of fighters go broke after they finish fighting and that shouldn’t happen. If a fighter gets seriously damaged or hurt, he or she should have something backing them so they don’t have to look for money to help pay for their medical bills.”

Crawford, the first welterweight boxer to take the top prize in all four professional championships in his weight class, is seeking to change boxing’s labor standards just a couple weeks after he beat Errol Spence Jr in a marquee bout where both fighters entered undefeated. Crawford’s union plan also comes as organized movements around the U.S., from UPS drivers and Hollywood writers and actors, have fought for better contracts and benefits. The NFLPA, MLBPA, and NHLPA have all publicly supported the WGA’s ongoing strike. 

“If all of the top fighters with a name and a brand behind them came together, we could make change,” he said.  “We have different races, different ages, different countries — it’s everyone from all walks of life coming together. I think it can be done.”

In January 2022, Crawford filed a lawsuit seeking nearly $10 million against his former promoter Bob Arum of Top Rank, accusing him of racial bias against promoting Black fighters. 

“Boxing is one of the most corrupted sports there is and ever [has] been in the history of sports,” Crawford said in another interview with Boardroom. “We’ll take a $5 million guarantee not knowing there’s $30 million dollars that we missed,” he added. “Once I started asking [contract] questions and learning a bit here and there, it became a problem between me and my old promoter, and at that point in time, I knew it was time to go.”

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