OMAHA, Neb. (AP) Dierry Jean couldn’t find his passport, so he wasn’t able to travel from Canada to appear at Monday’s news conference announcing his October fight against unbeaten WBO junior welterweight champion Terence “Bud” Crawford.
But Jean’s image made it to Nebraska. Crawford co-manager and trainer Bryan McIntyre held up a poster of the fighter, scribbled over his face and laid the poster on the floor.
“That’s what I think of Dierry Jean. For real,” McIntyre said.
Crawford, 26-0 with 18 knockouts, will be making his first defense of his junior welterweight title in the Oct. 24 HBO bout at CenturyLink Center. Crawford also holds the WBO lightweight belt.
Jean, 29-1 with 20 knockouts, has won four straight since losing a 12-round decision to Lamont Peterson last year.
Camille Estephan of Eye of the Tiger Promotions said Jean asked for the fight, and he welcomes the opportunity to come to Crawford’s hometown. Estephan noted that he himself has visited the CenturyLink Center for investor Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway shareholders meeting, and he expects another enjoyable evening in two months.
Jean’s trainer, Mike Moffa, said that while Crawford is a great champion, he is beatable.
“You’ve got speed, you’re intelligent, you’ve got power, you’re slick,” Moffa said, looking at Crawford. “I would say you’re even more complete than (Floyd) Mayweather. It’s the truth, man. Sometimes you get a little too excited in that ring and put (out) too much for the fans. That’s why HBO loves you. We’ve been watching you, some videos, and we’ll find a way to leave with that belt, Terence.”
Top Rank vice president Carl Moretti then took a playful jab of his own.
“This is what he looks like,” Moretti said, holding up the Jean poster and then laying it on the floor to look like a knocked-out boxer, “and this is what he might look like on Oct. 24.”
Moffa yelled, “Never did he go down in his life.”
When McIntyre picked up the poster, scrawled over Jean’s face and put it back on the floor, Estephan took umbrage.
“You made it personal, putting this paper on the ground. Big mistake, buddy. Karma is going to get you, I’m going to make sure of that,” Estephan said.
Crawford said Jean will be in for a long night.
“Yeah, he’s a good fighter. I take nothing away from any fighter,” Crawford said. “Oct. 24, I’ll be 100 percent ready, probably more than 100 percent. But mark my words, he will lose.”
This story corrects the spelling of Mike Moffa’s last name.