The new promotion in town has managed to land a second big boxer in less than a week.
Former champion Adrien Broner has officially signed with BLK Prime Boxing, the platform was officially announced during a press conference on Tuesday afternoon. Broner joined the upstart outfit just four days after it was confirmed that the third reigning WBO welterweight titlist Terence Crawford (38-0, 29KOs) will headline the company’s first major Pay-Per-View.
“This is a special moment for me,” Broner said in a short statement. “I want to thank God. I have suffered from anxiety attacks in the game. God is always looking for a way to give me an opportunity to take
I want to give a shout out to my man Desmond. I call him my uncle Desmond, CEO of BLK Prime. I want to thank him for this opportunity. I think with my brand, with Game of Billions, with BLK Prime, we’re going to take over boxing and take it to an unprecedented level.”
The announcement did not include a fight date for Broner. It has been confirmed that he will not appear on the December 10 PPV headlined by Crawford in his title defense against David Avanesyan (29-3-1, 17KOs) from the CHI Health Center in Crawford’s hometown of Omaha, Nebraska.
Cincinnati’s Broner (34-4-1, 24KOs) has not fought since his twelve-round, unanimous decision victory over Jovanie Santiago last February 20 in Uncasville, Connecticut. The fight, the first since Manny Pacquiao lost their welterweight fight in January 2019, sold nearly 400,000 units on Showtime Pay-Per-View.
At his best, Broner has long served as one of the most watched fighters in the sport. His impressive personality has attracted more attention than his achievements in the ring, where he has won major titles at bantamweight, bantamweight, junior welterweight and welterweight.
Broner’s last competitive victory came in October 2015, when he stopped Khabib Allakhverdiev to win the WBA ‘Super’ welterweight title in his hometown of Cincinnati. His first title defense ended in a draw, when he lost weight before a ninth-round stoppage of Ashley Theophane in April 2016 in Washington, DC. -and- the ring and problem is slowing his work to a crawl.
Broner is scheduled to return to the ring on August 20, where he will face his friend and former heavyweight champion Omar Figueroa in a three-time Showtime title fight in Fort Lauderdale, Arizona. The 33-year-old boxer pulled out of the event ahead of fight week, citing mental health concerns that he claims he has since overcome as he returns to training camp in Florida.
Before the signing, BLK Prime—known simply as a pay-on-demand service—made waves to secure Crawford as its first signing. The development comes in the surprising form of Crawford breaking off months of negotiations with WBA/WBC/IBF champion Errol Spence Jr. (28-0, 22KOs) for a superfight originally scheduled for November 19 in Las Vegas and then moved to February 2023.
The fight is out of play and with the possibility of a comeback. Right now, Crawford is in to help BLK Prime Boxing launch its brand and now he has a new ride-or-die to help with the cause.
“It all started with my roommate, now my roommate, my boy from Nebraska, Terence Crawford,” Broner said. “I will be present, new argument and speculation.”
BLK Prime representatives teased that more signings are coming in the coming weeks.
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDABox