Thurman: Barrios a great challenge

Keith Thurman Training Camp 01.01.03 02 05 2022 Training Camp Ryan Hafey Premier Boxing Champions
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Premier Boxing Champions

Former unified welterweight champion Keith “One Time” Thurman discusses why he chose former super lightweight champion Mario “El Azteca” Barrios for his return to the ring on February 5 in a $74.99 FOX Sports pay-per-view from Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas.

“Mario Barrios had the best record out of the small handful of fighters presented to me,” explained Thurman. “He had an exciting performance against ‘Tank’ Davis, and it just seemed like it’d be a great challenge for both of us. We’re two fighters who are exciting in the world of boxing, talented and coming off their first career losses. It might not sound exciting at first, but if you understand what it is to have a competitive mindset, you know both of us will demand greatness out of ourselves.

“Some fighters, after their losses, rise up and demand more – focus harder, train harder, fix some technical skills that were lacking – offense or defense, strength issues. We saw it with Canelo Alvarez after he lost to Floyd Money Mayweather. Not because he was Canelo, but that loss made him rise and show that he was more than a puncher, because he has more than he showed prior to his loss.

“I’m not less-than after my loss; I’ll show greater skills to the fans in fighting Mario Barrios than I did against Manny Pacquaio.”

Thurman hasn’t fought since losing to Manny Pacquiao in 2019. Why the long delay?

“I wanted to get back into the ring in 2020, but I was in a pickle,” said Thurman. “I was offered a get-back fight in-studio with no fans. Coming off the Pacquiao fight, it just didn’t excite me to come back without fans. I love my fans. I love the sport of boxing. I could have done it for the activity, and perhaps, in retrospect, it would have been good to be in the ring. But while the activity would have been good, the excitement wasn’t appealing. I was financially stable, didn’t need the money, and desired to make meaningful performances and meaningful fights in the welterweight division.

“2022 has presented more opportunities to me and my career; at 33, I’m young, willing, and able, and it’s time to get back…I have the skills to once again rise to the top and reclaim my number one spot in the welterweight division. It’s my time to rise. One time, it’s go time.”

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  • He’s been away so long, I have no idea what to expect from Thurman at this point.

  • haha..he watched the films and he is vulnerable to a punch keith thinks he can throw…sill lisper

  • Thurman is drained to make 147 like Canelo was drained to make 152 to fight Floyd. But Canelo fought at 154 and 155 for awhile after the Floyd loss, I guess 2 or 3 more lbs helped Canelo. I remember when Thurman was thinking about being a 154 lbs fighter (2012 vs Carlos Quintana). Barrios is a 139.5 lbs fighter. I don’t really care about Thurman being drained. He had from 2013 to now to think about moving up to 154, and he still drains down to 147. If that makes his body weaker to body shots, that is his sacrifice to make 147. This is a $24.99 fight.

    • “This is a $24.99 fight”

      If that. $74.99 for this is just outrageous. Not sure it’s even possible to put together a good enough undercard to justify the price…

  • Barrios can’t take a punch. Easy showcase for Thurman’s come back. Another ripoff($69.99) from PBC.

  • $74.99 FOR THIS!!! There was a time when boxing had ONE major PPV per month that was about $49.99. A fight like this would be on HBO, Showtime or ESPN.

  • “ a $74.99 FOX Sports pay-per-view…”
    – Too much $$ for PPV.
    – Thank you, Amazon Fire Stick !!

  • Man, even the Superbowl is not PPV. Boxing is getting ridiculous. How do you even build up a fan base doing this? Shortsighted money grab.

  • I’m just stumped as to how anyone can convince themselves that this is a viable PPV matchup that people will pay 75$ buck for? Do they have some kind of bigger plan and are comfortable taking a big loss on this one for some unknown reason? I like both fighters but no way this sells for anything but a loss. What do you figure all, maybe 20k in buys?

  • this is free tv at the best not 74.99 who really cares about thurman and barrios shame on the person that came up with this

  • Keith trying really hard to hype this. Even he knows this match is not anything special. He even says ‘it may not sound exciting at first.. ‘ the fact is that Keith views Barrios as a safe opponent for his return to the ring. Good record, former champion, coming up in weight, susceptible to a k.o. = safe return.

    As others have said: who knows what Keith has left at this point?

    He’s only been in a handful of grueling fights. Despite his injuries he shouldn’t have a lot of wear and tear. He’s well rested. If he’s even 75% of his best he should win fairly easily. If he’s less than that it could get interesting. Barrios is closer to his prime, young, height and reach advantages.

    Really a crossroads fight.

  • I agree with the $49.99 person thats the era n catagory i line up with. I like both Keith an Marrios. Keith better watch out, Barrios aint no tune up. He fought hard to get that belt. I bet Tank won’t give him no rematch. An i can’t for the life of me see a rematch Not in his clause for the Davis/Barrios fight. His Manager should be kicked n his teeth. But he’s young i get it n yes he got smoked by tank but he left it in the ring. Like he said, the better man won tonight. That ain’t gonna keep going dwn like that. Gary Russel thought he was invincible after a 2yr layoff. Plus look wht happened to one time after his layoff. But i can’t see $74.99. No Thank You!

  • It says lots because he in no win situation from a managerial standpoint; everything to lose, little to gain against a genuine bad @$$ with little name at this point even though former world champ!

  • Sad. Thurman lost 2 years at the end of his peak and it’s not the first time he does so. This fight, rust or not, will show us what he has left. We will be able to tell if he is living the true fighters life(in shape no matter what), or he’s doing this to get back in shape. If it’s the latter, it’s pretty much curtains from here.

  • I think Keith Thurman is just blowing smoke, he knows that Shawn Porter would be a better more lucrative fight but he’s running ‍♂️

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