Arum on Crawford Plans: Indongo Fight First, Then Pacquiao

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By Victor Salazar

New York – WBC/WBO world champion Terence Crawford (31-2, 22 KO’s) did what he normally does on Saturday night; take a formidable opponent and make him look like he doesn’t belong in the same ring. Felix Diaz (19-2, 9 KO’s) is an Olympic gold medalist and a very credible junior welterweight who many felt had defeated Lamont Peterson in a controversial decision loss.

But against Crawford, Diaz might have not won a single round. Crawford even fought Diaz south paw the whole fight. This was something his promoter, Bob Arum of Top Rank, Inc. has expected ever since his first showing on HBO.

“Ever since his first fight on HBO, I thought he was going to be the best of the best,” Arum told reporters ringside after the fight this Saturday. “I thought tonight, he fought a really tough guy and he handled with him with ease. He just gets better and better.”

The plan is to make a fight with Julius Indongo (22-0, 9 KO’s) for all of the 140 pound-titles this summer and then likely go after a mega fight after.

“We want to unify with (Julius) Indongo and get all four belts, once we get all the belts this summer, he’s going to fight Pacquiao and we’re going to set it up with my new partner Warren Buffet,” joked Arum.

In the history of boxing there is somewhat of a changing of the guard or passing of the torch when a once famed superstar fights an up and coming fighter. In victory, the up and coming star makes his name off that fight.

Arum sees a fight between Manny Pacquiao (59-6-2, 38 KO’s) and Terence Crawford differently, not as a changing of the guard but a competitive fight that people will pay to see.

“No changing of the guard, it’s a fight that people want to see and pay for or a fight, they won’t pay for,” Arum explained about a potential fight between Pacquiao and Crawford.

“The changing of the guard is bullsh*t fake news like you guys say. It’s fake news. If people want to see the fight and it economically will do justice to both guys. I think it would be a terrific fight and I’d make the fight.”

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Terence Crawford stops Felix Diaz in 10th round to stay unbeaten

NEW YORK (AP) — Terence Crawford patted Felix Diaz on the head and pounded uppercuts into his eye in his latest dominant victory.

His next fight could bring him all four 140-pound belts.

Or it could bring him Manny Pacquiao.

Crawford remained unbeaten when Diaz’s corner stopped the fight after the 10th round of the 140-pound fight and looks ready for whichever of his options comes later this year.

“I’ve been saying that for years now. It’s not up to me. But everybody wants to know who’s the next guy that Terence Crawford wants to fight,” Crawford said. “I’ll fight anybody. It doesn’t matter who it is.”

Crawford had dominated after a couple close early rounds and Diaz’s left eye appeared swollen shut, making him helpless to spot Crawford’s lightning-fast combinations.

Crawford (31-0, 22 KOs) toyed with Diaz in the 10th, backing him into the corner and then, rather than throw any punches, patting him on the head. He then unloaded a couple hard shots toward the end of the round, prompting trainer Joel Diaz to tell referee Steve Willis his fighter could no longer continue.

Afterward, Crawford named longtime superstar Pacquiao and welterweight champion Keith Thurman as fighters he’d want if he moves up in weight. But he may stick around at 140 a little longer to grab the two belts he doesn’t own.

Crawford successfully defended his WBC and WBO titles. Promoter Bob Arum said the Omaha, Nebraska, fighter would return this summer and they could look to unify the titles against Julius Indongo, who holds the WBA and IBF 14-pound titles.

“Once he gets all four belts he’s going to fight Pacquiao with my new partner Warren Buffett,” Arum said.

Diaz (19-2, 9 KOs), lost for the first time at 140 pounds and was stopped for the first time.

www.usatoday.com/story/sports/boxing/2017/05/20/crawford-stays-unbeaten-with-10-round-rout-of-diaz/101954878/

05/20/2017 Terence Crawford vs. Felix Diaz

Date:  Saturday, May 20, 2017

WBO / WBC Jr. Welterweight Championship Title Bout

Location: Madison Square Garden, New York, NY, USA

Promoter:    Top Rank / Bob Arum

Supervisor:   Francisco Valcarcel, Esq.

Referee:  Steve Willis

Judges:   Glenn Feldman, Julie Lederman, Steve Weisfeld  

Results:    The WBO/WBC Jr. Welterweight Champion Terence Crawford remained unbeaten when Felix Diaz’s corner stopped the fight after the 10th round and then the champion won by RTD.

TV:   USA HBO

Photos: Terence Crawford Beats Down Felix Diaz For TKO Win

Terence Crawford patted Felix Diaz on the head and pounded uppercuts into his eye in his latest dominant victory. His next fight could bring him all four 140-pound belts. Or it could bring him Manny Pacquiao. Photos by Mikey Williams.

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Crawford remained unbeaten when Diaz’s corner stopped the fight after the 10th round of the 140-pound fight and looks ready for whichever of his options comes later this year.

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“I’ve been saying that for years now. It’s not up to me. But everybody wants to know who’s the next guy that Terence Crawford wants to fight,” Crawford said. “I’ll fight anybody. It doesn’t matter who it is.”

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Crawford had dominated after a couple of close early rounds and Diaz’s left eye appeared swollen shut, making him helpless to spot Crawford’s lightning-fast combinations.

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Crawford (31-0, 22 KOs) toyed with Diaz in the 10th, backing him into the corner and then, rather than throw any punches, patting him on the head. He then unloaded a couple hard shots toward the end of the round, prompting trainer Joel Diaz to tell referee Steve Willis his fighter could no longer continue.

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Afterward, Crawford named longtime superstar Pacquiao and welterweight champion Keith Thurman as fighters he’d want if he moves up in weight. But he may stick around at 140 a little longer to grab the two belts he doesn’t own.

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Crawford successfully defended his WBC and WBO titles. Promoter Bob Arum said the Omaha, Nebraska, fighter would return this summer and they could look to unify the titles against Julius Indongo, who holds the WBA, IBO and IBF 140-pound titles.

“Once he gets all four belts he’s going to fight Pacquiao with my new partner Warren Buffett,” Arum said.

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Diaz (19-2, 9 KOs), a 2008 Olympic gold medalist for the Dominican Republic, lost for the first time at 140 pounds and was stopped for the first time.

The shorter Diaz tried to get inside but was kept away by Crawford in the first round, though he landed a couple of hard shots when he closed the distance in the second — when he won the only round he was credited with on one judge’s card. The fighters stared at each other after the round ended, but Crawford seized control from there.

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“I knew he was frustrated,” Crawford said.

Boxing throughout from the southpaw stance, he rarely let Diaz get close again, using left uppercuts and combinations. He put his 4-inch reach and 3-inch height advantages to good use, and when being bigger wasn’t good enough, Crawford relied on being faster, spinning out of trouble any time Diaz lunged forward.

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“No excuses, I lost to the best guy at 140 pounds,” Diaz said through promoter Lou DiBella.

Crawford stuck out his tongue at Diaz after one exchange in the seventh, showing no fear. Diaz’s face was swollen by the ninth and ringside doctors checked his eye before the start of the 10th.

Joel Diaz gave Felix one last round but it was clear there was no point.

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Photos: Terence Crawford, Felix Diaz – Go Face To Face at MSG

NEW YORK — Undefeated World Junior Welterweight Champion and top pound for pound fighter TERENCE “Bud” CRAWFORD will make his 2017 debut, Saturday, May 20, at the Mecca of Boxing, Madison Square Garden.  This will also be his debut headlining in the big room — a testament both to his talent and his growing popularity.  Photos by Ed Mulholland.

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Crawford will be defending his unified World Boxing Organization (WBO) / World Boxing Council (WBC) / Ring magazine titles against former Olympic gold medalist and top-rated contender FÉLIX DÍAZ in a marquee all-action fight.  It will be televised live on HBO World Championship Boxing, beginning at 10:15 p.m. ET/PT.

crawford-diaz (6)“Crawford vs. Díaz was made for The Garden and I anticipate a battle between these two warriors worthy of its moniker as the Mecca of Boxing,” said Hall of Fame promoter Bob Arum.

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“Come May 20, I will be ready for whatever Félix Díaz brings to the ring that night,” said Crawford.  “It’s going to be a great experience fighting at Madison Square Garden in the big arena where all the greats have fought.  I’m looking forward to that night.”

crawford-diaz (9)“We’ve got our work cut out for us fighting against another Olympic gold medalist,” said Brian McIntyre, Crawford’s trainer and co-manager.  “It’s an honor to fight in the arena at Madison Square Garden.  It’s a step up going from The Theater into the big room.”
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“First, I would like to thank the man upstairs for making my dream come true.  I would also like to thank Lou DiBella, Al Haymon, HBO and my manager Jose Nuñez for working around the clock to get me to this point,” said Díaz.  “The time has finally come. I will share a ring with one of the best pound-for-pound fighters in the world and I tip my hat to Crawford for accepting me as an opponent on May 20 because I am no pushover. I’m coming to bring my A-game and I couldn’t be more grateful to be able to showcase my skills on HBO and at Madison Square Garden, which is just 15 minutes from where I live.  I will take full advantage of this opportunity.  I respect Crawford and believe he is a great fighter, but every king can be dethroned.”

crawford-diaz (3)“Félix Díaz is an Olympic gold medalist, a seasoned professional and the best fighter Terence Crawford has ever fought.  We have been chasing this fight for a year because Felix and our team believe we can win.  The fans will win when they see a terrific, competitive fight on May 20th,” said Lou DiBella, the promoter of Díaz.

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crawford-diaz (2)“On May 20, unified champ Terence Crawford faces gold medalist Félix Díaz in a fight to light up Madison Square Garden,” said Peter Nelson, Executive Vice President, HBO Sports.  “Holding two belts and a place on any top pound for pound list, Terence Crawford looks to have his 2017 debut make a big statement in the Big Apple.  Fans will see both fighters’ mettle tested at the Mecca of Boxing.”

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