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Terence Crawford next fight: Former undisputed champ set for debut at 154 pounds vs. Israil Madrimov

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Terence Crawford is set for his first fight since his career-defining win over Errol Spence Jr. this past July. Crawford, who became undisputed welterweight champion with his win over Spence, will make his junior middleweight debut against WBA champion Israil Madrimov on Aug. 2 in Los Angeles. A press conference is expected on Wednesday to formally announce the matchup.

This is a familiar path for Crawford. After going undisputed at junior welterweight in 2017, he moved to welterweight and won the WBO championship in his first fight at 147 pounds with a TKO win over Jeff Horn. Crawford defended that title six times while fans called for a fight with Spence, who put together the WBC, WBA and IBF titles, but was a part of Premier Boxing Champions, while Crawford was in the Top Rank stable for most of that time.

When the fight was eventually made, Crawford made the most of it, thoroughly dominating Spence in a battle of pound-for-pound list staples.

A rematch clause was in place but that fight never materialized, leaving Crawford free to move up to 154 pounds and chase another championship.

Jermell Charlo, the WBA “champion in recess,” had stated he was activating his right to fight Madrimov for the title, but ultimately backed down. It’s possible that a Crawford vs. Charlo fight could do good business as the two have traded words in the past.

Madrimov is a very good fighter, with a 10-0-1 record, and is a reasonable test for Crawford, especially as he moves up in weight. Crawford will no doubt be the favorite, but this is a legitimate fight, even if Madrimov is not a household name.

Three other fights have been announced for the event with WBA junior welterweight champion Isaac “Pitbull” Cruz taking on Jose “Rayo” Valenzuela, former unified heavyweight champion Andy Ruiz Jr. facing Jarrell “Big Baby” Miller, and Leo Santa Cruz and Abner Mares meeting for a third time in their career despite neither having fought since 2022.

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