By: Hans Themistode
Although it’s been well over two years since Keith Thurman has entered the ring, the former unified welterweight champion is slowly rounding into form and looks forward to making his return.
Having dropped his WBA 147 pound title to Manny Pacquiao in July of 2019, Thurman had subsequent hand surgery to correct a long-standing issue. With the Florida native now back in the gym and working off the rust, he’s patiently waiting to see what his team can line up for him in the near future.
Recently, Thurman’s name was mentioned by CEO of Mayweather Promotions Leonard Ellerbe as an opponent he would match up against Gervonta Davis, the current WBA “Regular” titlist at 130, 135 and 140. While Thurman isn’t opposed to the idea of facing Davis, his eyebrows begin to raise intriguingly when asked if he would be interested in moving up in weight to face unified super welterweight champion, Jermell Charlo.
“I love the credentials I have and I want to further my credentials,” said Thurman during an interview with FightHype.com. “That fight entices me as far as furthering my credentials. It would be hard to say no to all of the belts. It would be hard to say no to making history and becoming a champion once again in a new weight class.”
After settling for a split decision draw in his most recent ring appearance, Charlo, 31, has made his intentions clear that he fully intends on facing off against Brian Castano once again. The two swapped fists on July 17th, at the AT&T Center in San Antonio, Texas.
With 12 rounds of mostly aggressive action, judges Tim Cheatham, Nelson Vazquez and Steve Weisfeld were unable to determine a winner. While Charlo vs. Castano may have been the most-watched fight on Showtime since December of 2019, averaging 422,000 throughout the night and peaking at 536,000, Thurman was not amongst those who tuned in to watch.
Regardless of his lack of interest in their matchup, Thurman is still fascinated with the possibility of moving up in weight to face the antagonistic knockout artist. If, in fact, he does make the trek seven pounds north and ultimately fails to become a two-division champion, Thurman believes he has a backup plan.
“Worst case scenario, I fall short, Thurman hops right back into the welterweight division.”
All in all, the possibility of heading to the 154-pound division would be something of a whirlwind for the Florida native. It isn’t that the former unified welterweight titlist is unwilling to move up in weight but in a moment of candid conversation, Thurman reveals that he envisioned the move happening when the light at the end of his boxing tunnel was a bit more closer.
“I’ve always had small admirations to move up but I just always felt that it would be a little bit more in that 34-35 age bracket. Maybe even at the last chapter of 36 and beyond. It’s always been a maybe later kind of issue. Too many belts, too much for the history books, I might have to sign up for that.”