After 11 months without a single round of boxing for Terence Crawford, tonight he makes his return as he defends his WBO World Welterweight Title against Great Britain’s own Kell Brook!
The Coronavirus pandemic has led to 11 months of inactivity for the Nebraska fighter nicknamed ‘Bud’. Dubbed by some respected figures in the boxing world as the best pound for pound boxer in the world, it’s safe to say Crawford has enjoyed life at the top of the Welterweight game.
Since winning the title from Jeff Horn in the summer of 2018, Crawford hasn’t looked back. He has beaten Jose Benavidez Jr, beaten Lithuanian Egidijus Kavaliauskas and most notably he decimated Amir Khan in just six rounds.
His boxing style is widely praised, but many claim Crawford hasn’t come up against World Class opposition in their prime. Khan is Crawford’s biggest scalp, but it was well documented that Khan wasn’t in his prime and was a shade of his former self upon his 2018 return.
Since stepping up from the Light Welterweight division, Crawford has had no trouble in adjusting to the new weight class and has made it his own. In a short space of time, he has become top dog in the Welterweight game and does not look like relenting that title any soon.
Meanwhile, this fight poses as somewhat of a ‘last chance saloon’ for a 34-year-old Kell Brook. The Sheffield born fighter has taken a descent in weight class after being pummelled by Gennady Golovkin in 2016, losing the IBF Middleweight title in the process. Amidst talks of a Brook v Khan showdown, ‘Bud’ also lost his mandatory bout against Errol Spence Jr., knocking the stuffing out of his career.
Since then, Brook has fought in the Junior Middleweight division, with his most recent bought coming against a relative nobody in Mark DeLuca. The significance of this is that this is his only fight since 2018, which may cancel out any ‘ring rust’ advantage he could have gained from Crawford’s 11-month absence.
What is for certain is that the Englishman is very much the underdog for this bout and the vast majority of people are expecting a comfortable Crawford win. This could very well be one of if not Kell Brook’s last fights, and it certainly feels as if this will be his last shot at a World title at any level. As for Crawford, despite Brook not necessarily being in his prime, this is still a considerable test for the American, particularly due to his absence. Will there be a shock title change tonight or will we see Crawford retain and Brook bow out of the World Title scene? Find out here with LIVE updates from the bout in Las Vegas…
4:40am GMT- We are Moments away from the fight now, as the national anthems are being sung in an empty arena before this World Title Main Event…
The Champion Terence Crawford and Kell Brook line up on opposite sides of the arena in Vegas…
The music hits, and Kell Brook is making his way to the ring.
And now a confident-looking Champions struts to the ring with a swagger about him. Crawford looks ready to be back in the ring. The fight is imminent!
The two fighters are being addressed by the referee and we are ready to go…
Round 1- An incredibly tentative first round, with neither fighter really laying a glove on the other for two of the opening three minutes. In the final minute both fighters got a couple of light shots in but no one giving an inch so far.
Round 2- Slightly more action in this round. An even three minutes with both fighters getting some shots in. That round probably just about goes to Crawford following a couple of stiff right hooks along with some good jab combinations.
Round 3- Some decent shots coming from both corners in this round. Once again this round goes to Crawford for me, with Kell Brook leaving himself vulnerable to that right hook when he comes forward with his left jabs.
Round 4- Crawford has Brook rocking and the Englishman looks dazed. ‘Bud’ smells blood and comes back on the attack with some right and left hooks. The fight cannot continue and Brook is stopped as he is dazed and out on his feet.
Winner by TKO Round 4- Terence Crawford (Retains his WBO Welterweight Title)
A routine victory as expected for Terence Crawford. It seems no one in the Welterweight division can match him. This fight in truth was being edged by Crawford until the American grabbed the fight by the scruff of the neck with a thunderous right hook that sent Brook stumbling over to the ropes trying to regain his balance. Crawford then caught Brook with a fight whilst he was in the ropes and at that point, the bout was done. Kell Brook was evidently unaware of his surroundings even during the count. Moments later, Crawford finished the job and the referee stepped in to call the fight. A telling moment was just seconds after the fight Kell Brook asked his ring crew “What happened there?”.
With Crawford retaining his title, he will be keeping an eye out for his next opponent. Rumours of a blockbuster fight between Crawford and Manny Pacquiao were kept simmering as Crawford stated that he wants to try and get that fight on the table. However, his promoter took a slightly different approach as he stated that the winner of Spence Jr. v Garcia would be the next opponent for ‘Bud’ , unless the blockbuster fight with the ‘Pac-Man’ could be processed and finalised.
As for Brook, it’s unclear where he may go from here. Surely his tenure in the World title picture at any weight is over now, so some decisions will have to be made about Brook’s next step. Perhaps the fight that never happened with Brook v Khan? It would seem that even if that were to occur it has come far too late. This could very well be the last time we see Brook in a boxing ring. After a sensational rise to the top, unfortunately, it’s been a recurring story in the big Pay-Per-View fights for Brook, coming out on the losing side just as he did against Golovkin and Spence Jr.
That just about wraps it up. Thank you for following my coverage of tonight’s bout.