By Edward Chaykovsky
After the first four rounds of the fight, the tension was building as Olympic gold medal winner Yuriorkis Gamboa (23-1, 16KOs) was able to outland and outbox WBO lightweight champion Terence Crawford (24-0, 17KOs).
The entire contest changed, to the delight of the near 11,000 fans at the CenturyLink Center in Omaha, when Crawford dropped Gamboa in the fifth round. Crawford would drop Gamboa again in the eight and two more times in the ninth for the KO win.
Top Rank President Todd duBoef revealed that the three official judges did have Gamboa winning the fight after the first round, but the undefeated champion battled back to dominate the remainder of the match.
"Two of the judges had it three to one Gamboa, and one had it two to two after four. HBO had it four to nothing Gamboa. So the drama was definitely building and everybody that watched him come back and kick his ass after being down [on the cards]," duBoef said.
Crawford would later admit that he took the first four rounds to "feel Gamboa out" and he felt strongly, after watching many of challenger's past fights, that Gamboa always starts strong but "fades in the later rounds."