By: Sean Crose
He could be Jack Dempsey. Or Joe Louis. Or any number of other legends of the first half of the last century. For there you see him in the brief video clip, wearing a thin white tank top and white shorts, circling a heavy bag, hammering away at it, second after second, minute after minute, powerful punch after powerful punch. Errol Spence may be the epitome of a modern fighter, but it’s hard to deny the man has a throwback, all business quality to his training that’s worth taking note of.
The situation may change, but right now, the welterweight titlist appears to be preparing for his much hyped August match with Manny Pacquiao in under-the-radar fashion. Run Pacquiao’s name through YouTube and you’ll be inundated with a wide selection fascinating and up to date training videos. Run Spence’s name and you’d be hard pressed to find more than one or two up to date videos of him in training. Although Pacquiao is clearly the more well known of the two fighters, you have to wonder whether team Spence’s low key approach to the media isn’t by design.
Then again, Spence is a rather low key individual. He may make the occasional eyebrow raising tweet, but overall the soft spoken Texan lets his fists do the talking for him. Pacquiao himself may also be soft spoken, but when you find yourself representing an entire country, it’s hard not to continually be in the middle of the spotlight. Plus, Pacquiao clearly enjoys having fans and followers around. He relishes it. The energy seems to elevate him as an athlete. Judging from the most recent evidence available on Spence, the powerful southpaw enjoys keeping to himself in the gym while others go about their own routines. He is, in a sense, all business.
Spence also comes across as being secure enough in himself to be comfortable letting Pacquiao have the attention for now. As the man himself says, Pacquiao is one of the greats. There doesn’t seem to be any animosity on the part of Spence, just an ability to view matters realistically. He may be getting overlooked at the moment, but no one who knows boxing is underestimating the man. There’s a reason why Pacquiao is being viewed as the underdog here, and it has more to do than with just age. Perhaps that’s why Spence can be seen in training camp hitting a bit low on the heavy bag, at about the spot where Pacquiao’s jaw just might be found.