Undefeated WBA Welterweight World Champion Keith “One Time” Thurman hosted media at the St. Pete Boxing Club in Florida Wednesday as he showed off his skills in advance of his Saturday, July 20 showdown against eight-division world boxing champion Senator Manny “PacMan” Pacquiao.
The FOX pay-per-view begins at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT and is highlighted by this high-stakes match that will firmly give the winner a claim for the top spot in one of boxing’s deepest and most talented divisions.
According to Thurman, this is the biggest fight of his career and his moment to shine bright.
“This is history in the making. This is one of the best fights all year. This is the biggest fight of my career,” Thurman said. “You see a lot of fight posters in this gym; I remember when Winky Wright, fought ‘Sugar’ Shane Mosley. I remember when he fought ‘Tito’ Trinidad. For me, this is my Mosley. This is my ‘Tito’ Trinidad moment. I get to show the world that Keith ‘One Time’ Thurman is not just a great champion; he can beat legends.
“I’ve always told everybody since the day that I was first on TV. I called out the world champions then. They didn’t know who Keith Thurman was, but I was trying to let the world know that Keith Thurman belongs at the top, and now the world is finally understanding why.”
Before defeating Josesito Lopez in January, Thurman was out of the ring for almost two years. Now, he will be getting back in the ring for the second time this year, which is good news for Thurman.
“It’s really good for me to have this momentum back,” Thurman said. “This is the first time in four years that I have fought twice in one year, and it’s not just twice in one year, it’s twice in almost six months. I’ve taken the momentum of getting the dust brushed off of us in January against Josesito Lopez. We hired two conditioning coaches in preparation for this fight so that I can give the fight fans, along with myself, a tremendous performance next Saturday.
“There’s always a question of will I get injured again. As a puncher, you can always find ways to hurt your hands. Hands were not made to punch each other in the skull. We’re craftsmen. We’re tile workers, woodworkers, mechanical workers. These hands were designed for something a little different, but luckily with different forms of therapy, we feel confident for this fight and pray that we stay healthy in the future so that we can keep giving the world tremendous fights.”
What will happen on July 20 in Las Vegas? Thurman has a prediction.
“My prediction? Less than six rounds. I would love to be 30-0 with 23 knockouts. We’ve got 22, and we’ve held those 22 knockouts for a little too long. It’s time to get one more knockout.”
Photo: Damon Gonzalez/TGB Promotions