Errol Spence Jr and Terence Crawford have reportedly signed to face one another on July 29.
The ESPN report says the fight will land at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, and will have a two-way rematch clause that will be the loser’s to activate.
Boxing journalist, Mike Coppinger, also details a tentative plan for a trilogy, with the third fight taking place up at 154lbs and the winner likely to push for a title shot.
The fight is seen by hardcore boxing fans as perhaps the most time-sensitive in the sport. Spence (28-0, 22 KOs) won the IBF belt back in 2019 by defeating Britain’s Kell Brook.
He would add the WBC belt in 2019 and the WBA in 2022 against Yordenis Ugas after returning from a retinal tear to his left eye suffered the year prior.
Crawford (39-0, 30 KOs) was champion at both 135 and 140lbs before moving up to welterweight and winning the WBO world title in his first fight in the division against Jeff Horn in 2018.
He has made six successful defences of the belt, last out against David Avanesyan in December 2022.
July 29 is the latest in a string of reported dates, but the fighters are yet to sign on the dotted line. It will mean fans remain sceptical, but there’s no doubt that the elite-level clash – that has long been held as an example of the sport failing to match the best with the best – seems to be closing in.
Should talks drag on further, many will feel the contest will move past its sell-by date.