By Keith Idec
LAS VEGAS – Terence Crawford completely controlled his fight against Jeff Horn, won each of the eight concluded rounds on all three judges’ scorecards and stopped the gutsy Australian in the ninth round.
Nothing about their one-sided welterweight title fight suggests the need for a rematch. Horn and his handlers disagree, and want a second shot at Crawford.
“I definitely think I can win a rematch if we have a rematch,” Horn said during a post-fight press conference at MGM Grand. “And surely I should be allowed one, because I was the champion.”
There probably wouldn’t be much interest in a Crawford-Horn rematch among American boxing fans. In Horn’s homeland, however, his handlers are sure supportive Australians would back a second bout between them at Suncorp Stadium.
A crowd in excess of 51,000 attended the Horn-Manny Pacquiao fight at that outdoor venue 11 months ago.
The announced attendance for the Crawford-Horn card at MGM Grand Garden Arena was 8,112. Their fight would’ve drawn a bigger crowd if it had taken place either in Australia or Crawford’s hometown of Omaha, Nebraska.
“Maybe we’ll get a rematch,” Glenn Rushton, Horn’s trainer/manager, said. “I would dearly, dearly love for Jeff Horn to fight Terence Crawford in Australia. And if we get that opportunity, I’m very confident we can turn the tables. Jeff Horn is only gonna go up another gear or so. Just couldn’t quite land the flush shots here tonight. But he has shown, as [promoter] Dean [Lonergan] said, that he’s up there with the very, very best. But as we’ve said, it was an incredibly courageous effort.”
Lonergan explained following Horn’s first defeat that the reason they couldn’t bring Crawford-Horn to Brisbane was because Crawford wasn’t well-known among Australian sports fans. That has changed, Lonergan assured, because of the intense coverage nearly 30 traveling members of the Australian media provided of Crawford-Horn from Las Vegas.
“Put it this way,” Lonergan said, “if we can put on a Manny Pacquiao-Jeff Horn fight, we can put on a Terence Crawford-Jeff Horn fight down in Australia. … There’s a lot of things that have to take place. You know, Bob Arum [Crawford’s promoter] is a major contributor to what’s gonna happen next, too. So it comes down to what’s the best option for Terence Crawford. If Glenn tells me he wants to have a rematch, then I’ll work my ass off to or I’d try to make that happen.
“And Bob’s gonna be looking around, saying, ‘What are the best options for us? What’s the most amount of money? And what do I wanna try and achieve? And what does Terence Crawford wanna try and achieve?’ So I think it was incredibly gracious for Terence to be talking the way he is and we’re very, very thankful for it, and it’s definitely something we’ll pursue. So let’s just wait and see.”
According to Lonergan, Crawford (33-0, 24 KOs) expressed interest in traveling to Australia for a future fight, as long as the money is right.
“With the amount of branding we’ve built around Terence Crawford and Jeff Horn,” Lonergan said, “I think it would be very easy to put a rematch together. And Australians love to back their own. And Australians love to back an underdog. And Australians, most importantly, love to back a battler and a guy who’s got the potential to win. And Jeff Horn’s all of those things.
“So if Jeff was up for it and Glenn was up for it and the Queensland state government was up for it and the Brisbane City Marketing were up for it, and I think they would be, and Terence Crawford was up for it, I’m sure we could make it happen. It’ll just come down to one thing, mate, where’s the most amount of money? And that’s what it’s all about.”
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.