Keith Thurman: Greatest Hits

A look back at the former unified welterweight champion’s best performances ahead of his 147-pound clash against former super lightweight champion Mario Barrios on Saturday night on FOX Sports PBC pay-per-view.

A Pensacola poet once coined the phrase “Y’all Musta Forgot!” The popular refrain could also be applied to the latest saga by fellow Florida native, Keith “One Time” Thurman of Clearwater.

Thurman, the former unified world welterweight champion, makes his highly anticipated return to the ring against former super lightweight champion Mario “El Azteca” Barrios on Saturday, February 5 in the FOX Sports PBC Pay-Per-View (9 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. PT) Michelob’s blockbuster main event ULTRA Arena at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas.

It’s been 30 months since fight fans saw Thurman inside the squared circle. Once considered the heir apparent to the great Floyd Mayweather, Thurman lost his 147-pound WBC and WBA belts to Manny Pacquiao by split decision in an epic battle in July 2019.

Injuries kept the explosive, fan-friendly fighter out of the ring and now a rejuvenated Thurman is here to prove he’s hungrier than ever. But before “One Time” climbs the ropes for what should be another war, here’s a look at his five greatest performances.


JESUS ​​CHAVES

Dated: July 27, 2013

Site: AT&T Center, San Antonio, TX

Results: Thurman KO 10

Recordings: Thurman 20-0 (18 KOs), Chaves 22-0 (18 KOs)

Summary: It was a battle between two rising and undefeated fighters eager to take a big step towards their world title aspirations. Thurman had a well-deserved reputation as a knockout artist, but Chaves was no slouch himself. The war everyone expected erupted early when the two powerful punchers went head-to-head from the opening bell. Chaves landed his share of shots, including a right hand in the third that broke Thurman’s nose. Thurman found his range in the fourth and proceeded to destroy Chaves.

The constant onslaught of punches took its toll. In the ninth, Thurman forced Chaves to a knee with a left hook to the ribs. Chaves finished the round but in the tenth Thurman floored him again and put him out for good at 0:28 into the lap.

“I saved my best tools for later rounds,” Thurman said. “I knew he would be in great shape from the start, but eventually he would die. That’s when I hit him with this beautiful body shot.”

Perhaps even more memorable than the victory was Thurman’s infamous gaffe in the post-fight interview. “I would like to thank this beautiful city. Thank you, San Diego,” Thurman shouted. “San Antonio, I mean. San Antonio! »


JESUS ​​SOTO KARASS

Dated: December 14, 2013

Site: Alamodome, San Antonio, TX

Results: Thurman TKO 9

Recordings: Thurman 21-0 (19 KOs), Soto Karass 28-8-3 (18 KOs)

Summary: Thurman would return to San Diego, uh San Antonio, for his next fight – this time at the Alamodome against veteran Jesus Soto Karass. The Mexican slugger attacked as soon as the opening bell rang, stunning Thurman with a big overhand forehand seconds into the fight. “One Time” rallied, responded in kind, and the war was on.

In the end, Thurman’s unique blend of skill, power athleticism and ring IQ allowed him to take over. In the fifth, a right-left hook combination drove Soto Karass to the mat and in the ninth he was taken down for good when a vicious combination from Thurman left him on his feet before he hit the deck. . Referee John Schorle wisely waved it off at 2:21 of the ninth.

Thurman got it right this time during the post-fight interview. “San Antonio, baby. Thank you. There’s a lot of badass but ‘One Time’ represents the knockout every time. They can take it for a few rounds, but they can’t take it for 12 rounds.


Robert Guerrero

Dated: March 7, 2015

Site: MGM Grand, Las Vegas, Nevada

Results: Thurmann UD 12

Recordings: Thurman 21-0 (19 KOs), Soto Karass 28-8-3 (18 KOs)

Stakes: Thurman’s WBA world welterweight title

Summary: Thurman, now the WBA 147-pound champion, kicked off PBC’s NBC debut against four-division titlist Robert “The Ghost” Guerrero in front of a raucous crowd of more than 10,000 at the famed MGM. A clash of headers in the third caused a big knot in Thurman’s noggin but didn’t slow him down. He dominated much of the action, tattooing Guerrero with stunning combinations until Guerrero’s face became a reddish blur.

Guerrero stayed on his feet until the ninth, when a series of jabs punctuated by a right uppercut sent him crashing to the canvas. Ever the warrior, he beat the count and fought back bravely, showing a heart that knocked fans out of their seats. Even so, Thurman never lost command, winning a 12-round wide decision by scores of 120-109, 118-108 and 119-109.

“Robert Guerrero was a tremendous warrior,” Thurman said. “He is known as ‘The Ghost’ and is a veteran, a [former] world champion. He showed it today and was a little calmer.

“I thought he was going to push more in the early laps. But he’s a veteran, and he knew how to keep his pace and stay a little out of reach. It was an awesome fight and an amazing learning experience for me, Keith ‘One Time’ Thurman.


Shawn Porter

Dated: June 25, 2016

Site: Barclays Center, Brooklyn, New York

Results: Thurmann UD 12

Recordings: Thurman 26-0 (22 KOs), Porter 26-1-1 (16 KOs)

Stakes: Thurman’s WBA world welterweight title

Summary: It was the first prime-time boxing event on CBS since Muhammad Ali fought Michael Spinks in 1978 – and those who tuned in witnessed one of the greatest welterweight battles in the storied history of the division. Unsurprisingly, this involved two of the best to emerge in this era, Thurman and “Showtime” Shawn Porter, the latter a former IBF welterweight world champion dreaming of another strap.

The well-informed crowd in the Big Apple witnessed a brutal and jaw-dropping back-and-forth between two starving 147-pound elites. Each in turn wounded the other in the head and in the body. It was anyone’s fight before the championship rounds. Porter was relentless and Thurman was up to the challenge, finishing strong to take a close decision. The three judges scored 115-113 in his favor.

“I want to thank Shawn Porter for an awesome fight, he’s a great warrior,” Thurman said. “Defense is the key to victory. He smothers his shots a lot and makes it difficult for the judges to score. I was able to rock him with clear and efficient shots and I think that was the difference today. It’s all about defense. I had a great defense today.


Danny Garcia

Dated: March 4, 2017

Site: Barclays Center, Brooklyn, New York

Results: Thurmann SD 12

Recordings: Thurman 27-0 (22 KOs), Garcia 33-0 (19 KOs)

Stakes: Thurman’s WBA and Garcia’s WBC welterweight world titles

Summary: It was a fight fans had been waiting for, a unification match between two undefeated welterweight champions in their prime. The numbers confirmed it. The Barclays Center in Brooklyn set an arena record for a boxing event with 16,533 people in attendance. The peak viewership for the PBC-SHOWTIME event on CBS reached 5.1 million viewers, the highest viewership for a prime-time boxing show since 1998.

Almost everyone thought the fight would end early when Thurman staggered the steel-chinned Garcia in the first round with a left hook followed by a right hand. Garcia kept his composure and got back into the fight after a rocky start. In a fight that featured several adjustments from both fighters, Thurman found his way to victory, holding his lead despite Garcia’s late push to win a 12-round split decision. A judge scored 115-113 for Garcia while Thurman won on the other two maps by scores of 116-112 and 115-113.

“I thought I had passed him.” Thurman said. “I thought it was a clear win, but Danny came to fight. I knew when it was split and I had it poured out, I knew it had to go to me.

A few weeks later, Thurman underwent surgery to remove calcium deposits in his right elbow, an injury that caused him severe pain during the fight against Garcia. He was sidelined until January 2020 when he edged out Josesito Lopez. In July, he suffered the loss of Manny Pacquiao. “One Time” is on a mission to reclaim its place atop the welterweight throne, starting this Saturday against Barrios on the FOX Sports PBC pay-per-view.

For a closer look at Keith Thurman, check out his fighter page.

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