LAS VEGAS – Terence Crawford walked very purposefully toward Shawn Porter, who stood in the middle of a stage Friday afternoon at Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino.
It was as if Crawford, who has waited three years for this type of high-profile fight, wanted to start proving his welterweight worth right then and there. Now that they’ve made weight, Crawford will have to wait approximately 30 more hours before he’ll get that opportunity.
Crawford, 34, stepped on the Nevada State Athletic Commission’s scale at 146.4 pounds for their ESPN Pay-Per-View main event Saturday night at Mandalay Bay’s Michelob ULTRA Arena. Porter, also 34, officially weighed in at 146.6 pounds.
Crawford will make the fifth defense against Porter of the WBO 147-pound championship he won from Australia’s Jeff Horn, whom Crawford stopped in the ninth round of their June 2018 bout at MGM Grand Garden Arena. The former undisputed junior welterweight champion is listed by Caesars Sportsbook as a 7-1 favorite to beat Porter, a former IBF and WBC welterweight champion who is considered the toughest opponent of Crawford’s 13-year pro career.
Crawford, of Omaha, Nebraska, hasn’t fought in just over a year, not since he defeated former IBF welterweight champ Kell Brook by fourth-round technical knockout last November 14 at nearby MGM Grand Conference Center.
Porter, a Las Vegas resident raised in Akron, Ohio, will end an even longer layoff Saturday night. He hasn’t boxed in nearly 15 months, since he easily out-pointed Germany’s Sebastian Formella in their 12-rounder in August 2020 at Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles.
Crawford-Porter is the main event of a four-fight pay-per-view show scheduled to start at 9 p.m. ET and 6 p.m. PT. That portion of this eight-fight card costs $69.99 to watch, but it also requires at least a one-month subscription to ESPN+ ($6.99) to order it.
The official weights for the seven bouts on the Crawford-Porter undercard are listed below.
ESPN+ Pay-Per-View (9 p.m. ET; 6 p.m. PT)
Esquiva Falcao (28-0, 20 KOs), Vitoria, Brazil, 158.8 pounds vs. Patrice Volny (16-0, 10 KOs), Montreal, 159.4 pounds, 12 rounds, IBF middleweight elimination match.
Janibek Alimkhanuly (10-0, 6 KOs), Oxnard, California, 159.8 pounds vs. Hassan N’Dam (38-5, 21 KOs), Monte Carlo, Monaco, 158.6 pounds, 10 rounds, middleweights.
Raymond Muratalla (12-0, 10 KOs), Fontana, California, 135.4 pounds vs. Elias Araujo (21-3, 8 KOs), Santa Fe, Argentina, 137 pounds, 8 rounds, lightweights.
ESPN2; ESPN+ (7 p.m. ET; 4 p.m. PT)
Isaac Dogboe (22-2, 15 KOs), Accra, Ghana, 125 pounds vs. Christopher Diaz (26-3, 16 KOs), Barranquitas, Puerto Rico, 125.5 pounds, 10 rounds, featherweights.
Adam Lopez (15-3, 6 KOs), Glendale, California, 126.4 pounds vs. Adan Ochoa (12-2, 5 KOs), Compton, California, 126.5 pounds, 8 rounds, featherweights.
ESPN App (6 p.m. ET; 3 p.m. PT)
Karlos Balderas (10-1, 9 KOs), Santa Maria, California, 131.8 pounds vs. Julio Cortez (15-3, 11 KOs), San Jose, California, 131.4 pounds, 6 rounds, lightweights.
Delante “Tiger” Johnson (pro debut), Cleveland, 144.8 pounds vs. Antonius Grable (3-1-1, 3 KOs), Sarasota, Florida, 146.8 pounds, welterweights.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.