By Keith Idec
LAS VEGAS – Jeff Horn senses Terence Crawford is underestimating him.
The undefeated Crawford continually has stated he respects Horn and has prepared accordingly for their 12-round, 147-pound title fight Saturday night. Australia’s Horn, the defending WBO welterweight champion, doesn’t believe him.
“I think they are underestimating me, but that’s because of my style,” Horn told BoxingScene.com following on open workout Wednesday at MGM Grand. “It doesn’t look a hundred-percent pretty, but everything I do works and I do it for a reason. Come fight time, he’s gonna realize that.”
The 30-year-old Horn believes what he perceives as Crawford’s overconfidence will help him pull off another upset in his second title defense.
Manny Pacquiao was a 6-1 favorite over Horn when Horn recorded a controversial, unanimous-decision victory against the Filipino legend 11 months ago in Brisbane, Australia, Horn’s hometown. Crawford (32-0, 23 KOs), of Omaha, Nebraska, is an even heavier favorite, roughly 10-1, in a fight that’ll be streamed live on the ESPN+ app from MGM Grand Garden Arena.
“It’s great,” Horn said, “because if he doesn’t bring his ‘A’ game, I’m definitely gonna win. So he needs to bring his ‘A’ game to beat me in there.”
The 5-feet-9 Horn has a one-inch height advantage over Crawford. Some experts expect Horn to out-weigh Crawford by as much as 10 pounds once their bout begins as well.
Horn (18-0-1, 12 KOs) is confident he not only can beat Crawford, but knock out the former lightweight and super lightweight champion.
“Look, if I land the right punch,” Horn said, “if he zigs when he should’ve zagged, and I connect with those punches, especially with those horsehair gloves, he’s going down and he’s going out.”
The Horn-Crawford fight will headline an eight-bout card Saturday night at MGM Grand Garden Arena.
The undercard will begin streaming on ESPN+ at 6:30 p.m. ET/3:30 p.m. PT. The co-featured fight, a 10-rounder between lightweights Jose Pedraza (23-1, 12 KOs) and Antonio Moran (23-2, 16 KOs), is set to start at 9:30 p.m. ET/6:30 p.m. PT.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.