Undefeated Champion Terence Crawford to Defend Title Against Kell Brook
Undefeated WBO welterweight champion Terence Crawford will defend the belt against former champion Kell Brook this Saturday.
Updated: Oct. 12, 2020 • 6:15 PM ET
Kell Brook is looking to pull off the upset this weekend.
Undisputed WBO welterweight champion Terence Crawford will defend the title against former champion Kell Brook this Saturday at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.
Crawford (36-0, 27 KOs) is considered one of the top pound-for-pound fighters in the world. He has held multiple titles in three different weight classes, including the WBO welterweight title since 2018, the WBO, Ring magazine and lineal lightweight titles from 2014 to 2015, and the undisputed WBA (super), WBC, IBF, WBO, Ring and lineal light welterweight titles between 2015 and 2017.
Since winning by unanimous decision over Viktor Postol in the summer of 2016, the 33-year-old Crawford has ended each of his last seven fights before the final bell.
In his most recent bout against Egidijus Kavaliauskas last December, Crawford looked human for the first half of the fight, but he eventually stopped the Lithuanian fighter in the ninth round.
Including Postol, Crawford has key victories over Amir Khan, José Benavidez Jr., Jeff Horn, Julius Indongo, Felix Diaz, John Molina Jr, Hank Lundy, Thomas Dulorme, Ray Beltrán, Yuriorkis Gamboa, and Ricky Burns. However, if the Omaha, Neb. native defeats Brook, will he finally face a top name at welterweight?
Crawford has been linked to a showdown with Errol Spence Jr. for more than two years, but the fight has not materialized. There are, however, other obvious names Crawford could consider, such as Filipino legend Manny Pacquiao, which could be a success for Crawford commercially. Or, there are guys like Keith Thurman, Shawn Porter, Danny Garcia or even Yordenis Ugas.
Spence Jr. and Garcia are scheduled to fight on Dec. 5 for Spence Jr.’s IBF and WBC titles. Crawford facing the winner of that fight to unify the titles seems like a logical choice, but unifying bouts are historically difficult to make.
Crawford is aware of the criticism regarding who he has and hasn’t fought.
“Sometimes it concerns me, but at the same time I don’t try to worry about those type of fights that are not getting made,” Crawford said via Bad Left Hook. “I feel like I’ve already put my stamp down in the history books and my legacy will live on no matter what, if I get those big fights or not. Given all those things that I’ve accomplished in the sport of boxing as a whole.
“Do I want those fights that everybody calling for? Yes, I’ve been calling for those fights before I was even (at) 147.”
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Brook has won three straight fights since losing the IBF welterweight title to Spence Jr. by 11th-round knockout in 2017. He won the IBF title in 2014 with majority-decision win over Shawn Porter and defended the belt three times before unsuccessfully moving up to middleweight to challenge then champion Gennady Golovkin for the WBC, IBF and IBO titles.
Since losing back-to-back bouts to Golovkin and Spence Jr., the 34-year-old Brook has begun his climb back up the welterweight ladder. Despite being written off after those two losses, he believes he is going to shock the world on Saturday.
“I’m going to need to use everything in my arsenal to get this victory,” Brook recently told Gareth A Davies. “I need to be on point. My eyes are going to be locked onto Terence from Round 1.
“I’m going to go out there and execute the gameplan we’ve got. It’s 36 minutes of my life I’m going to put down fully at 1,000 percent of my heart. Everything is going to be left in the ring that night. Win, lose or draw, I’m going to give it my absolute all. I believe that I am a very man to beat when I’ve got this in my heart with the focus I’ve got. There’s been a lot of shocks in boxing…one punch and you’re champion of the world again and the best thing since sliced bread. This is one of them fights where people wouldn’t be shocked when I come out with the win.”
Brook doesn’t think Crawford has fought a true welterweight like himself.
“I’m also an elite fighter,” Brook said. “He’s never boxed anybody with the size, self-belief and power I’ve got. He knows this as well.”
• How to watch/start time: The main card can be seen on ESPN at 10 p.m. EST this Saturday.