Terence Crawford’s stoppage win over Jeff Horn over the weekend made it very clear the American is now one the future elite boxers in the welterweight to middleweight divisions.
Crawford (33-0 with 24 KOs) made easy work of Horn (18-1-1 with 12 KOs) who proved to be out of the league of future elite fighters in the welterweight to middleweight divisions. Horn must have thought that his win over our very own Manny Pacquiao in July 2017 elevated him to the group aspiring to become part of the sport’s elite.
But it was obvious the Pacquiao (59-6-2 with 38 KOs) Horn fought in his home soil was no longer in his prime, and was a victim of sub-standard officiating. Horn must have also thought he could roughhouse Crawford like what he did to Pacquiao, but Crawford proved to be a crafty fighter whose height and reach also presenting challenges to the Australian.
Crawford was climbing in weight from junior welterweight (140 pounds) to challenge for the World Boxing Organization (WBO) welterweight (147 pounds) championship held erstwhile by Horn. That seven-pound jump in fighting weight was supposed to be a disadvantage for Crawford but that hardly bothered him when he faced Horn, who obviously looked heavier during the fight.
By winning the WBO welterweight title, Crawford joined the ranks of fighters who have won world titles in three divisions. He also united the junior welterweight titles prior to fighting Horn.
Well, I hope Crawford’s dominant win over Horn will send a message to older fighters in the welterweight division to steer clear of him and other young guns unless they want to be picked apart or disposed off methodically. And that includes Pacquiao, who reportedly was angling a fight against Crawford should he win over Lucas Matthysse (39-4 with 36 KOs) next month in Kuala Lumpur.
Crawford is currently ranked at No. 3 in The Ring Pound-for-Pound list behind Gennady Golovkin and Vasyl Lomachenko. The Ring does not rank Crawford in its junior welterweight and welterweight listings but that is inconsequential. A look at the The Ring’s ranking for welterweight show World Boxing Association (WBA) “super champion” Keith Thurman (28-0 with 22 KOs) at No. 1 and International Boxing Federation titleholder Errol Spence Jr. (23-0 with 20 KOs) at No. 2. Rounding up the top five in the list are Shawn Porter (28-2-1 with 17 KOs), Danny Garcia (34-1 with 20 KOs), and Horn. Pacquiao is at No. 6 while Matthysse is at No. 8. The magazine has yet to name a linear champion at junior welterweight and welterweight.
Seriously, the top four fighters in The Ring’s list for welterweight plus Crawford are also the future for the division up to middleweight, and veterans like Pacquiao and Matthysse should hang up their gloves soon.
Matthysse, currently the “regular” WBA welterweight champion, may still two to three good fighting years ahead of him if he wins over Pacquiao next month. But whether Pacquiao wins or loses against Matthysse, the Filipino better consider retiring and concentrate on helping his countryman as a Senator of the Philippines.
Only a bunch of fools would prod Pacquiao to fight Crawford, Thurman, or Spence should the Filipino win over Matthysse next month. I won’t be one of those fools.