Crawford Silences Benavidez

Crawfords defends WBO welterweight world title via 12th-round TKO

Photo credits: Mikey Williams/ TopRank

OMAHA, Neb. The crowd roared in anticipation and the native son, Terence “Bud” Crawford, delivered. Crawford (34-0, 25 KOs), following a contentious pre-fight buildup, defeated Jose Benavidez Jr. by 12th-round TKO to defend his WBO welterweight world title in front of 13,323 fans at the CHI Health Center Omaha.

Crawford improved to 12-0 in world title fights with one of his most emphatic knockouts. An uppercut knocked Benavidez down and a vicious follow-up combination ended things for good.

“We knew that he wanted to get in my head and make it a firefight,” Crawford said. “I saw him in his corner taking deep breaths and knew he was done.”

Said Crawford’s trainer/manager Brian McIntyre: “I told Benavidez he was going to get his ass kicked. And that’s what Bud did.”

The opening rounds were closely contested, but as the fight entered the second half, Crawford’s combination punching told the story. Benavidez (27-1, 18 KOs) gave Crawford one of the toughest tests of his career, but it was not enough to unseat the pound-for-pound king.

“I gave a hell of a fight to the best fighter in the world,” Benavidez said. “This is boxing. It happens. He is a great fighter, but I’m a great fighter, too. We gave the fans a great show.”

Crawford, meanwhile, improved to 5-0 as a pro in Omaha. And once again, he sent the hometown faithful home happy.