Advertisement
Advertisement
Boxingscene.com

Terence Crawford-Yuriorkis Gamboa: Post Report Card

By Cliff Rold

It was a beautiful dissection.

It’s been clear for quite some time that Cuba’s Yuriorkis Gamboa is flawed.  His frequent trips to the canvas and ability to make drama out of walkovers left all the clues.  He kept escaping because the gifts he was blessed with, the power and speed, bailed him out.

On Saturday, Terence Crawford put together a complete performance to solve the riddle.  Gamboa brought a strong game.  It took a special counter to top it.

Was it indicative of a special fighter growing in our midst?

Let’s go the report cards.

Grades
Pre-Fight: Speed – Crawford A-; Gamboa A/Post: A-; A+
Pre-Fight: Power – Crawford B; Gamboa B+/Post: B+; B
Pre-Fight: Defense – Crawford B+; Gamboa B-/Post: B+; C
Pre-Fight: Intangibles – Crawford B+; Gamboa B+/Post: A; B+

The plaudits calling it the Fight of the Year for 2014 so far might not be entirely accurate (there are a few fights this year that keep pace with Crawford-Gamboa), it is certainly a candidate.  The quality of the action, the combination of skill and hard hitting, was excellent.

This scribe didn’t see it quite as competitive as some though. 

HBO had Gamboa winning the first three rounds as did many in the press.  It might have been awe at the speed of Gamboa.  Crawford was right there with him even in the early rounds.  The only frame Gamboa definitively won was the third.  The first was two distinct halves, the second half favoring Crawford.  Round two was a coin flip, as was the fight going in.

Crawford rocked Gamboa seriously for the first time in round four.  Outside of a brief glimmer of hope for Gamboa in the ninth, it was almost all Crawford from there.  The taller, bigger (much by way of rehyrdration), and more disciplined man locked in and surgically took Gamboa apart.

Crawford’s body attack took the steam out his man and the right hand just wasn’t missing upstairs.  Prior to the fight, Crawford was still a bit of an x-factor.  We knew more about Gamboa, for better and worse.  What we knew bore fruit in his early effort and, almost, in round nine.  Gamboa was dangerous throughout. 

But now we know for sure about Crawford.  He’s the goods.  Will it carry above Lightweight?

That would seem the big question.  It’s still too early to declare Crawford a sure thing as he moves on in weight, something that appears imminent.  His two best wins are over a Ricky Burns and Gamboa who both came up the scale to Lightweight. 

At this moment, Lightweight isn’t the deepest class.  Jr. Welterweight is.  Crawford’s connection to Top Rank could mean a quick shot at someone like Jesse Vargas for a belt but the real challenges rest in men like Lucas Matthysse, Danny Garcia (if he sticks around), and perhaps Ruslan Provodnikov.  Crawford’s package of boxing and battler will mix just fine with those men.

And along the way we’ll find out even more.  Crawford has made it worth looking forward to.  On another note, his ability to put butts in seats in Omaha is a plus.  Nebraska has shown they’ll travel like few other regions for their Cornhuskers.  If he can tap into that, big fights could come sooner than later and we could have a genuine grass roots star on our hands.

For Gamboa, his stock should go up even if his body should probably head back to 130.  Jr. Lightweight has some good fights for him, namely Takashi Uchiyama and Takashi Miura.  Mikey Garcia could also factor in if he can resolve his issues with Top Rank.  We’ve not seen the last of Gamboa.  Now that he’s been brought down a rung, we might even see more of him.  

Report Card Picks 2014: 29-14

Cliff Rold is the Managing Editor of BoxingScene, a founding member of the Transnational Boxing Rankings Board, and a member the Yahoo Pound for Pound voting panel, and the Boxing Writers Association of America.  He can be reached at [email protected]

User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by Papaleo on 07-01-2014

There should be a database for this to make it easy to look up and compare grades between fighters.

Post a Comment - View More User Comments (1)
Top Headlines Pedro Diaz on N'Dam's Big KO Win, Golovkin vs. Jacobs, Gamboa Luis Ortiz: Miller Will Have To Back Up The Crap He's Talking Adonis Stevenson: Unfair Haters Call All of My Opponents 'Bums' Danny Garcia: Not Worried About Critics Who Won't Say it to My Face Eubank Jr: In a Rematch I Would Annihilate Saunders in Four! Pacquiao: In The Eyes of The People - I Beat Floyd Mayweather Andrew Selby Faces Diale For WBC Regional on Eubank-Quinlan Wilkins, Karkardi To Appeal BBBofC Bans Over Nick Blackwell Manny Pacquiao: I Would Fight Conor McGregor - Only in Boxing De La Hoya Worried: Chavez Jr. Could Derail Canelo-Golovkin Plan Danny Garcia on Father's Racial Jabs: I've Heard Trump Say Worse! The Return of Zab Judah Ricardo Mayorga Holds Press Conference, Reveals April 1 Return DeGale: Mayweather Came To My Room, I Doubt I'll Work With Him! Cuadras Sides With Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. To Take Down Canelo Canelo-Chavez: Big Promotional Tour on Tap, Big Undercard Plans Photos: David Lemieux, Curtis Stevens - Face To Face in Montreal Chris Eubank Jr: I Can Beat Gennady Golovkin, He's Not The Truth! Photos: Adam Lopez vs. Danny Roman - Official Weigh-in Leo Santa Cruz: I’ll Fight Different Than in First Frampton Bout Froch: I'm Very Confident Callum Smith Beats Anthony Dirrell Juan Jose Velasco Faces Fernando Marin in WBA Regional Clash Oscar Valdez Yearns For Gary Russell Unification Bout Dejan Zlaticanin: I Will Catch Mikey Garcia and Knock Him Out Brooklyn Boxing With a Big 2016, Bigger 2017 is Expected Garcia Feels His Resume Stronger Than Thurman's, Has Proven More Kid Galahad vs. Joseph Agbeko on Eubank-Quinlan PPV Card Dodson Offered Buglioni Title Shot; Would Land On Haye-Bellew Golden Boy Promotions, ESPN Announce Multi-Year TV Deal Callum Smith: If Dirrell is Next in Line For WBC Belt - Let's Do It! Richard Commey, Fredrick Lawson Back in Action on March 11 Michael Conlan on His Relationship With Conor McGregor Trainer: Charlo Should Fight Top 15 Middleweight, Become a Contender Hearn on Brook-Spence: Khan Worth 3 Times More, 3 Times Easier Thurman: Angel Garcia Wants the Limelight; Should Let Son Speak DeGale: Groves Should Drop WBA Shot, Fight Me For The IBF! Liam Smith vs. Liam Williams Showdown in Play For April 8 Callum Smith's Trainer is Not Buying Badou Jack's Weight Issues Haye, Bellew Could Lose Licenses if Further Violence, Says Hearn Dina Thorslund Wants Mikkel Kessler as a Number Boy
Advertisement
Latest Active Forum Threads
Advertisement
Advertisement