EDDIE HEARN hasn’t given up hope on the match much of the boxing world wants most for Jaron “Boots” Ennis, a showdown with Terence Crawford.

The three-weight world champion has stated that he isn’t interested in what Crawford considers a high-risk, low-reward fight with Ennis, yet Hearn thinks there could be enough money made available to eventually change Crawford’s mind. In the short term, Ennis’ new promoter is focused on bringing the unusually talented Philadelphia native to his hometown for a mandated defence of his IBF welterweight title against Cody Crowley sometime in July.

“Obviously he’s got Cody Crowley [as] his mandatory,” Hearn told a group of reporters on Thursday (April 18) following the Devin Haney-Ryan Garcia press conference at Barclays Centre in Brooklyn. “He has to get that out of the way. I would like to make ‘Boots’ against [Eimantas] Stanionis. I would like to make ‘Boots’ against [Mario] Barrios as well. I think now there’s a good opportunity to make big unification fights for ‘Boots,’ whereas previously there probably wasn’t.

“Crawford, [Errol] Spence, they all know how good Jaron is. And if you can bring the other guys into the mix and pay them well, I think they will fight Jaron Ennis. But he’ll be out in July hopefully, bring him home to Philadelphia, and then I wanna make a big unification matchup for him, ultimately leading to what I think is one of the biggest and best fights in the sport, which is Terence Crawford against Jaron Ennis.”

Fights with Lithuania’s Stanionis (14-0, 9 KOs, 1 NC) and San Antonio’s Barrios (28-2, 18 KOs) could become legitimate welterweight title unification fights for Ennis (31-0, 28 KOs, 1 NC) if Stanionis, the WBA world champion, and Barrios, the WBC interim titleholder, win their respective bouts on the Canelo Alvarez-Jaime Munguia undercard May 4 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. If Barrios beats Argentina’s Fabian Maidana (22-2, 16 KOs) and Stanionis defeats Venezuela’s Gabriel Maestre (6-0-1, 5 KOs), they’ll likely be elevated to the status of full champion because Crawford (40-0, 31 KOs) is expected to relinquish his WBA and WBC welterweight titles to compete in the super-welterweight division next.

Crowley (22-0, 9 KOs), a southpaw from Peterborough, Ontario, Canada, figures to be a huge underdog when he encounters Ennis in their 12-round title fight.

Ennis, 26, will likely end more than a one-year layoff by the time he faces Crowley. He hasn’t fought since he knocked out Venezuela’s Roiman Villa (26-2, 24 KOs) in the 10th round last July at Boardwalk Hall’s Adrian Phillips Theatre in Atlantic City, New Jersey.

Hearn’s Matchroom Boxing announced its impactful signing of Ennis to a multi-fight contract April 10.