Thurman: ‘I’m A Contender Again’
Once on top of the world, former WBA Welterweight Champion Keith Thurman has dealt with several injuries throughout his career. Thurman (29-1, 1NC) is looking to come back stronger than ever, especially after suffering the first loss of his career.
Speaking on the “AK and Barak Show”, the 31-year-old discussed his split decision loss at the hands of Manny Pacquiao this past July. After a rusty return against Josesito Lopez, many didn’t know what to expect from Thurman. Knocked down early, Thurman was able to come back and give Pacquiao a fight. In the end, Thurman lost, ending a streak that started in 2007.
“I have a motto, ‘I have an O, and I’m not afraid to let it go. If you can beat me, beat me.’ That doesn’t mean I was trying to be beat. There’s a difference, you know? Not carrying about your career and carrying are two different things,” Thurman stated, via Boxing News 24. “That statement means that if I face a man that’s better than me, then they’ll show me in the ring. You’ve got to go toe-to-toe with me, and it’s not easy to do.”
Thurman’s injury history is well-known. He underwent surgery on his right elbow, then suffered a deep bruise to his left hand as he was preparing for a fight. Following the Pacquaio bout, Thurman underwent hand surgery. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, boxing has been on hold. While Thurman did not have a bout planned, the extra time off may have helped him when it comes to future fights.
For the first time since 2012, Thurman is not holding gold. This motivates “One Time”, as it is a change of pace that can potentially result in a reward down the line.
“I’m ready to get back,” Thurman went on to say. “I’m a contender again. I think that’s what’s going to bring it out in me. The fact that I have to go GET it, you know? When I was going out to get it, everybody, as getting it. Everybody was getting the fire into the stick, you know?
“It’s only after you’ve sat on the top and you’ve been there, and body is coming for you that the fire’s not the same when you’re the one that’s being the hunted instead of the hunter.”
As far as who he would face next, nothing has been guaranteed. It is unknown if he would get a title shot right away. He could end up facing former champions in Shawn Porter or Danny Garcia, or he could face a rising star in Yordenis Ugas. They are all considered prey to Thurman, and he will look to strike as soon as the opportunity is right.