Top Rank brought WBO World Welterweight champion Terence “Bud” Crawford, of Omaha, NEB, back home in his first defense of his new title defending against his No. 14 contender Jose “Merciless” Benavidez, Jr., of Phoenix, AZ. The card was held at the CHI Health Center, Omaha, NEB, in a fight that was more hype that fight!
In the Main Event WBO World Welterweight champion southpaw Terence “Bud” Crawford, 34-0 (25), of Omaha, NEB, won a lopsided match over a defense minded Jose “Merciless” Benavidez, Jr., 27-1 (18), of Phoenix, AZ, stopping him at 2:42 of the twelfth and final round!
In the first round there was more action at the “face off” as usual when fighters call each other names prior to the fight. In the second round the jabbing continued. There were more punches landed on gloves than bodies. Crawford has too much speed with hands and feet for Benavidez. At the end of the round Crawford landed the first power punch to the chin.
In the third round Benavidez hands held high finally lands a right to the body of Crawford. Crawford made Benavidez miss three punches. Crawford landed two lefts to chin of Benavidez. Benavidez looked like the No. 14 contender. In the fourth round Benavidez landed a right to the mid-section and got countered with a left to the chin. Benavidez landed a lead right to the ribs partially blocked and followed with a right to the chin.
In the fifth round Benavidez landed a 3-punch combination scoring points but no damage. Crawford came back with a double left uppercut to body and chin. Benavidez landed a right uppercut to the chin of Crawford. Crawford ended the round with a flurry. Still where are the fireworks? In the sixth round Crawford continues to score punches to the body. Crawford landed four unanswered punches. He repeated it seconds later.
In the seventh round Benavidez continues not to know what to do about Crawford’s hand speed to the body. Benavidez with either hands high or to his side, but lacking any offense throughout the fight. Crawford landed a combination to the chin of Benavidez. In the eighth round Crawford landed a four punch combination using Benavidez for a punching bag. Crawford landed a three punch combination while Benavidez doesn’t know what to do. Benavidez came in and missed throwing a three punch combination. It’s been a glorified sparring session through eight rounds.
In the ninth round Crawford landed a four punch combination as Benavidez shakes his head as if he isn’t hurt but throws nothing in return. Crawford landed a combination while Benavidez missed with a counter combination. Benavidez looks like he is in to go the distance staying on defense and missing more than landing.
In the tenth round Benavidez backed into the ropes and did his version of the rope-a-dope while Crawford landed a dozen punch with half blocked. Crawford’s mother is yelling up “finish him!” Crawford pins Benavidez against the ropes with little if anything in return from Benavidez who has embarrassed himself for ten rounds.
In the eleventh round Benavidez continues missing punches as Crawford’s hand speed has dominated a one sided match. Benavidez lands more in a clinch than at any other time. Benavidez landed a lead left to the chin and got countered with a three punch combination to the head.
In the twelfth and final round Crawford continued the mismatch against a disgraced “challenger! A right uppercut dropped Benavidez who never recovered. He was up and Crawford was all over him. The referee should not have stopped it until Benavidez was on the canvas again.
Crawford proclaimed “I want the champs” but fights No. 14 who was a joke! There wasn’t one exchange in spite of all the taunting prior by both “thugs!” Crawford did nothing to make him a pound for pound top boxer and Benavidez should take up another profession!
Crawford said “First I want to thank God!” Benavidez said “I gave him a tough fight?” Go watch the tapes and your face in the mirror. You were a sparring partner for twelve rounds. Crawford did little to prove he is the No. 1 pound for pound fighter in the world!
Former Olympic Silver Medalist southpaw Shakur Stevenson, 9-0 (5), of Brick City, NJ, stopped Viorel “Bombardierul” Simion, 21-3 (9), of Lehliu Gara, Romania, for the vacant Continental Americas Featherweight Title, at the end of the first round.
In the first round Simion rushed in as Stevenson made him miss. Stevenson scored with a right hook to the head and down went Simion. He got up but got hit with punches and threw one back and missed so bad he fell to the canvas. The referee counted it as a knockdown. At the ten second warning a left followed by a right hook dropped Simion again as he tried grabbing the ropes but it didn’t help. He beat the count but the referee wisely called a halt.
“I want to give thanks to my grandfather telling me how to use my right hook. I also want to thank my sparring partners. I want to get right back in the gym,” said Stevenson.
Super Welter Dominican Carlos Adames, 15-0 (12), of Washington Heights, NY, scored a TKO over Joshua “Young Gun” Conley, 14-3-1 (9), of San Bernardino, CA, to win the vacant NABF Super Welter title, in 2 rounds.
Former interim WBO World Super Lightweight champion now welterweight Mike “Mile High” Alvarado, 40-4 (28), of Denver, CO, knocked out mediocre Robbie Cannon, 16-14-3 (7), of Festus, MO, in 2 rounds.
Former Olympian Super Featherweight Mikaela Mayer, 8-0 (4), of Colorado Springs, CO, defeated Vanessa Bradford, 4-1-2 (0), of Edmonton, Alberta, CAN, over 8 rounds. 80-71 on all 3 cards. She is improving with each fight. Philadelphia’s Al Mitchel is co-trainer.