Unbeaten welterweight sensation Jaron Ennis is missing only two landmarks from his impressive resume.
A world-title opportunity but also a high-value name on his CV.
The current IBF interim welterweight champion and mandatory challenger to the undisputed welterweight king, Terence Crawford, has been trying his best to entice one of the big hitters at 147lbs to enter the ring with him but currently has been having limited success in securing that next prominent step in his career.
At twenty-six years old, Ennis has time on his side despite having to wait for his title opportunity even further as Crawford has the small matter of obliging a rematch clause to Errol Spence Jr, whom Crawford dominated and dismantled inside nine rounds to become the undisputed champion at welterweight in July.
Even if Crawford was victorious in the re-run with Spence Jr, it is still not guaranteed that Ennis will get his opportunity to face the Omaha native due to Crawford’s desire to move up through the weights with the likes of Jermall Charlo, Jermell Charlo and Canelo Alvarez on Crawford’s wish list.
Ennis, who has accumulated an unbeaten record of 31 wins (28 KO’s, 1NC) had been happy to face whoever was put in front of him by Premier Boxing Champions. However, following his victory over Roiman Villa in July, he began targeting the likes of Vergil Ortiz, Eimantas Stanionis and former unified welterweight champion Keith Thurman (30-1).
Ennis has received unjust critique from the boxing public regarding his inability to entice Thurman into the squared circle, which is unfair to lambast a fighter on the rise with such an accusation. It ultimately takes two parties to agree on a deal; if one party is unwilling to reciprocate, you eventually have a deadlock.
“We trying, we trying,” said a frustrated Ennis to YSM Sports Media regarding Thurman’s inability to agree to terms. “There’s nothing else I can do. I get tired of hearing his name. He keeps acting like he never got an offer before.”
Thurman himself has cast a frustrating fixture of the welterweight division, mainly through inactivity, injuries and taking time away from the sport due to personal reasons. Thurman, who at one point was linked with a contest with an active Floyd Mayweather and Kell Brook, to name but a few, has recently thrown his hat into the ring in announcing his willingness to fight Crawford.
At 34 years old and inactive following five fights in the previous seven years, Ennis recognises that Thurman is chancing his arm in wanting to secure a fight with Crawford after the undisputed welterweight champion mocked Thurman and cited that Thurman previously was unwilling to face the Omaha native.
“He [Thurman] just wants a cash out. He’s older, he still can fight, he’s still good but he’s just trying to find a big payday,” when Ennis explained why he believes Thurman is pushing hard for an encounter with Crawford.
Thurman was last in action on February 5 in 2022, losing a wide unanimous decision to Mario Barrios in a convincing fashion.