Advertisement: IBO Boxing

Lopez Shines, Crawford Grinds: Weekend Afterthoughts

A star is born.

Or, at least, arrives.

Another (unofficially) got off the deck and scored his seventh straight knockout across two weight classes.

Overall, it was a good night for boxing on ESPN as fans were treated to a solid top to bottom show without having to log on to the app. As 2019 turns the page to 2020, what does it mean for the victors, Teofimo Lopez and Terence Crawford, and their divisions, lightweight and welterweight?


Let’s get into it.

The Future for Crawford: Fights don’t happen on paper. Going into the weekend, Crawford’s defense against Egidijus Kavaliauskas felt like too much of a foregone conclusion while Lopez’s challenge of Richard Commey felt like the real pick ‘em battle. In the end, it played out as expected in Crawford winning. The road there was more entertaining than expected and ended up being the scrap of the night. Kavaliauskas fought his heart out and could have been credited with a knockdown in round two. He wasn’t, and a tangle between the fighters left it a fair enough call, but Crawford was buzzed.

Crawford responded by doing what he does. There are few fighters in boxing that carry the sheer menace Crawford does in a ring. He’s got a switch only certain fighters do; a zone he goes in to when he smells blood or determines he has to punish someone for the impudence of standing their ground against him. It might get him beat some day but it’s fun to watch. The question is who will we watch it against next year?

Crawford’s opponents at welterweight have been solid enough professionals but they aren’t the top of the class. Crawford needs to find a way to do business with someone in the PBC or he’s going to have to wait for a challenge to emerge from 140 lbs. The former could come in the form of Shawn Porter, the name being bandied about the most right now. The latter, if it’s Toop Rank stablemate Jose Ramirez, could be the sort of fight that sells a massive crowd if placed in the right city. Crawford has special talent but he doesn’t have a special resume as yet. At 32, he needs to fill out the latter with haste.

The Future for Lopez: It looks like all signs are go for what Top Rank has carefully built over the last year or so. Bob Arum once said of Roy Jones, paraphrasing, that it was never a lack of opponents but a lack of knowing how to promote opponents into rivals. Teofimo Lopez, with a monster right hand to essentially win the IBF lightweight crown from Richard Commey in round two, is now a rival. Vasyl Lomachenko is the consensus pick for the world’s best at 135 lbs. Some think he’s the best fighter, period, in the world. Lopez is younger, less experienced, and hungry. Their showdown is coming, likely as early as April. That is Lopez’s future and he’ll win or lose in the ring but, even if it’s the latter, it still feels like we are only at the beginning of finding his ceiling.

Here’s some extra intrigue: in discussing the Lopez fight at ringside, Lomachenko said on ESPN he’d like to follow Lopez (assuming a win) with Gervonta Davis. Davis has emerged as a force at the ticket window despite a still light resume but he is ready for the big fights and hitting his prime. If Lopez defeats Lomachenko, how big could a fight with Davis get? If Lomachenko wins, do we get Davis by the fall? Lightweight is fun right now.     

Rold Picks 2019: 68-19 (No New Picks Made This Week)

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

User Comments and Feedback
Comment by Bronx2245 on 12-16-2019

[QUOTE=JakeTheBoxer;20259212]No way [B]Americans[/B] will make Tank - Haney, because they wanna hype both.[/QUOTE]I'm not in the mood to go there, so i'm not taking the bait! Tank vs. Haney would be a great set up, for the Loma vs. Lopez…

Comment by JakeTheBoxer on 12-16-2019

[QUOTE=Bronx2245;20259177]Since Loma has a date in April for Teo, then I would love to see Tank vs. Devin Haney! C'mon Floyd! Make It Happen! LSC is too small! Let him fight GRJ @ 130! If not Haney, then at least…

Comment by Bronx2245 on 12-16-2019

Since Loma has a date in April for Teo, then I would love to see Tank vs. Devin Haney! C'mon Floyd! Make It Happen! LSC is too small! Let him fight GRJ @ 130! If not Haney, then at least…

Top Headlines
De La Hoya: Mayweather-McGregor Rematch Would Be Same Story Otto Wallin Gives Wilder-Fury Prediction, Talks Career, Options Barthelemy-Puello 3/28 in Las Vegas For Interim-WBA Title on Showtime Euro News: Matteo Signani, James Kraft, Abass Barou, More Parker's Coach Does Not Expect Oleksandr Usyk Clash To Happen Claressa Shields: I'd School Braekhus, She Will Lose To Taylor! Wilfredo Mendez vs. Pedro Villegas Title Clash Set For February 8 Danny Garcia Vows To Bring A-Game, Make No Mistakes With Redkach Canelo Could Headline Overseas Event in 2020, Says De La Hoya De La Hoya: Shields vs. Jimenez Would Be an Incredible Fight Klitschko's Trainer: Wilder Did Not Get Knocked Out, He Did Get Dropped De La Hoya: Saunders Is Not The Frontrunner For Canelo Fight Maureen Shea Stops Martina Horgasz in Six in Hallandale, Florida Oubaali-Donaire Purse Bid Hearing Postponed, WBC Grants One-Week Extension Anthony Joshua Eager To Face Usyk, Says Fury is a 'Bit of a Waffler' Jake Paul: This is Not a One-Off, I Want To Keep Fighting Rau'shee Warren, Caleb Truax Return on Plant-Feigenbutz Card De La Hoya: I Think 168 Would Be A Nice Move For Canelo Joshua-Pulev: IBF Grants Extension As They Continue To Negotiate Deal News: Cletus Seldin, Raynel Mederos, Trinidad Vargas, More Dorticos Confident That He Will Put Briedis To Sleep Ramirez-Alvarez, Salamov-Vlasov Title Eliminators Ordered By WBO James Tennyson Inks Promotional Pact With Eddie Hearn Lubin's Coach: We Beat The Man Who KO'd Rosario, We Want Him Next! Wilder: Since Fury's In WWE, I'm Gonna Make Sure He Go Right Out The Ring Rosario, Promoter Want Julian Williams Rematch In New York Ryan Garcia Not Pressured To Outperform Davis, Farmer Versus Fonseca Ingle: Next Two Years Are Going To Be Good For Liam Williams Paul McCullagh Brings Dave Coldwell on Board For Pro Run De La Hoya Wants Ryan Garcia in World Title Fight By Year's End Joshua Aims To Jump Ahead of Fury Trilogy To Face Wilder in 2020 Fulton Out To Steal Danny Garcia's Saturday Night Show in Brooklyn Ryan Garcia Names Linares, Campbell, Davis For 2020 Four-Fight Wish List Manager: Salamov, Vlasov Both Want WBO Light Heavyweight Title Fight Ryan Garcia: I Get Paid Good Money To Post Every Day Oscar Rivas Closing in On Multi-Fight Deal With Top Rank Takeshi Inoue Takes Down Cheng Su in Two Rounds in Tokyo Eleider Alvarez Looks Forward To Joe Smith Showdown Anthony Sims vs. Roamer Angulo Set For Andrade-Keeler Card Former Coach Did Not See Much of a Change in Felix Verdejo
Latest Forum Threads