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May 23, 2017

By G. Leon

Arum says Wilder brings nothing to the table: "Not enough Gelt!"

GL: Congrats on a fantastic event over the weekend. Can you give us some thoughts on the card from top to bottom? I was really pleased. The performances were great. Terence was terrific. Beltran, that was very moving fighting for his green card. That was some knockout. I thought Shakur was terrific. Teofimo Lopez was great. I'm always pleased and pumped to do an event at Madison Square Garden. My muslim man Fazi (Gaibnazarov) was very good also.

GL: Is Crawford going to have to move up to welterweight to get real challenges?

Bob Arum: "I think there's going to be a real challenge and that's what we're going to be working on, having him fight the Indongo kid. The guy has both of the titles and it would be something very, very rare to have Crawford fight for all four major titles. That's going to be next for him and then maybe he goes Pacquiao, we'll see. He's going to fight this summer and then he's going to fight again in the winter."

GL: Based on Pacquiao's track record and resume, which can put up against anybody, are you surprised that some people are saying that Pacquiao isn't going to want to fight Crawford just because he looked impressive? Pacquiao's history shows he doesn't shy away from risk.

BA: "No. Because people are stupid and people don't understand that this is professional boxing. Pacquiao understands that Crawford is a difficult fight, there's no question about it. Everybody would tell you that, but it has to be worth while. If Pacquiao knows that he could do 700-800,000 buys fighting Crawford, he'd fight him in two minutes."

GL: What can you tell us about your Chicago event on Friday night?

BA: "We've got Conlan going and he's going to bring out the Irish crowd in Chicago. We have Alex Saucedo on the card and he's been looking great since he moved from Oklahoma to Los Angeles. He's fighting extraordinarily well, his co-manager is Peter Berg who is a renowned producer so it should be a very good card. Did you see what I did? My Chinese partner sent over two tremendous prospects from China, one of them Tong Hui Li was on the Garden card and he won a decision,  the other is a cruiserweight, Qu Peng and he will fight this week in Chicago."

GL: Backtracking for a moment, when will Shakur's next fight take place?

BA: "I don't know. He may not go in June, but he'll definitely go in July. And did you see his performance? Incredible. He wins the fight and then he comes out for Crawford's fight because he's buddies with Crawford. So he's with a bunch of kids and he's ringside and he sees me and he points at me with this big smile. He's like a real kid, he's like a little baby and it's very refreshing."

GL: Orlando Salido has a fight coming up. Assuming he gets out of that fight healthy, is making the Salido-Lomachenko rematch your primary objective for the best pound for pound fighter in the world?

BA: "Yes. We've been talking with the Salido people. Provided he gets by May 27, we're scheduling that event also for this summer. Either at the end of July or the beginning of August."

GL: Will Lomachenko's next card be another Eastern European triple header?

BA: "I'm not sure. I'm not sure. Maybe. It may not be. We'll see. We're going to do as good a card as we can put on. It's going to be a terrific event from top to bottom. I've got a lot of events and a lot of fights to come off the drawing board so to speak. I've got Zurdo Ramirez fighting Jesse Hart in what's going to a terrific fight and then I've got to find spots for Jesse Magdaleno and Oscar Valdez. It's going to be a very busy summer."

GL: Were you disappointed with Joseph Parker's recent performance? Are you confident the unification with Wilder will come to fruition?

BA: "Well, he's got to fight a mandatory first against Hughie Fury. That will take place in the UK in July."

GL: Is there no way around that with an exception so the unification can happen first?

BA: "No because economically it's better off to do Fury and then maybe Joshua. Wilder is a nice guy, but he doesn't bring anything to the table. He doesn't bring any money to the table. Not like these English guys do. What do you do with a Wilder fight? You can't put it on PPV so it goes on regular television and it's not going to do a huge gate."

GL: Maybe if you and Al Haymon found the right deal the fight could be on a major network like Fox or NBC.

BA: "But there's no gelt there. There's more gelt in England. In other words, if it's unification you're going to have to compensate Wilder and you're going to have to compensate my guy and there's not enough money."

GL: Wilder doesn't bring anything to the table. That's interesting.

BA: "It's not that he doesn't bring anything to the table. He doesn't bring enough to the table, not for another champion. The Wilder-Joshua fight would be interesting, but only in the UK. It wouldn't be huge in the United States, but in the UK it would do big business."

GL: What did you think about the Joshua-Klitschko fight?

BA: "I thought it was tremendous. I think it was the best heavyweight fight since Lennox Lewis fought Vitali. We haven't seen a great heavyweight fight in a long time and it was very entertaining and dramatic. I thought Joshua was done for, but he got up and took care of business so it was a great fight and good for boxing."

GL: Do you think Pacquiao might be taking Horn lightly?

BA: "He doesn't take anyone or anything lightly, when he's in camp he trains and he's going to come in fully prepared like he always does."

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