Crawford accuses Arum of ‘racial bias’


Terence Crawford’s promotional contract with Top Rank expired after his last fight in November

WBO welterweight champion Terence Crawford has filed a lawsuit against his former promoter Top Rank, alleging that “revolting racial bias” on the part of chief executive Bob Arum damaged his career.

Crawford, 34, left Top Rank in November 2021 after his contract expired, having first signed with the promoter in 2011.

His suit, which seeks over £3.9m ($5.4m) in damages, was described as “frivolous” by Arum, 90, who has worked with the likes of Muhammad Ali, George Foreman and Tyson Fury in his career.

Crawford is alleging breach of contract as well as fraudulent and negligent misrepresentation, and claims Arum and Top Rank failed to follow through on promises to secure a unification fight with Errol Spence Jr.

The Nebraska fighter has been chasing a fight with WBC and IBF champion Spence Jr for several years and alleges he had an agreement with Top Rank in 2019 that he would receive a £655,000 ($900,000) payment if the company failed to make an offer “in good faith” to Spence Jr by the end of 2020.

He also alleges Arum “continues to make racist and bigoted statements and purposefully damage the reputations of black boxers”.

Arum released a statement responding to the allegations.

“Bud Crawford’s lawsuit against Top Rank is frivolous,” Arum said.

“His vile accusations of racism are reckless and indefensible. He knows it, and his lawyer knows it. I have spent my entire working life as a champion of black boxers, Latino boxers, and other boxers of colour. I have no doubt the court will see Crawford’s case for the malicious extortion attempt that it is.”

Crawford, now a free agent, has won world titles at three weights and is considered one of the best fighters in the world.

Unbeaten in 38 professional bouts, he is expected to again push for a meeting with Spence Jr in 2022.

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