Video Credit: PBC/Showtime Sports

New FSM Essential Recap: Spence vs Crawford

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Terence “Bud” Crawford dominates from the start to defeat Errol Spence via 9th round TKO.

Spence vs Crawford took place on June 29th, 2023 in Las Vegas

Spence vs Crawford | Franchise Sports Media Crawford beating Spence
Photo Credit: Ryan Hafey/Premier Boxing Champions

The highly anticipated bout between two of the best pound-for-pound fighters in the world took place at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.

What had fans on the edge of their seats at the beginning became the witnessing of a public execution as Crawford improved to 40-0 31KOs. “Bud” showed why he has long been one of the most feared fighters in the ring regardless of division, as he put on a clinic against one of the best in the world.

Spence, 28-1, sustained his first professional defeat most devastatingly. One could argue that maybe Spence won the first round, which didn’t see much action. But there is no question that the remaining eight rounds belonged to Crawford. The idea was that Spence would be too big, too strong for Crawford, and wear down Bud as Spence‘s notorious lethal jab would lead to him landing big shots.

The opposite couldn’t be more true as Crawford showed off his impressive strength, standing his ground during exchanges and pushing Spence off in tie-ups with ease. When Spence landed punches on Crawford, nothing. When Crawford landed on Spence, mountains were being moved. Bud showed that there are levels to this fight game and was head and shoulders, even waist, above Spence in their first encounter.

Spence vs Crawford was billed as the best fight in over a decade

There is a rematch clause for them to meet again, which Errol Spence has to decide to use. But after such a beatdown, the question would be, why?

Spence vs Crawford was dominated by Terence Crawford

Spence vs Crawford | Franchise Sports Media Crawford punching Spence
Photo Credit: Al Bello/Getty Images

Crawford dropped Spence three times on the night—the first of Spences‘ career. The first came in the second round as Crawford landed a straight left, then a flush right cross that caught Spence, sending him back onto the mat.

The entire week of the fight, Spence seemed very relaxed, confident, and sure that he would be victorious. This made him look lethargic, out of sync, under-prepared, and maybe he didn’t think Crawford had anything for him. This first knockdown proved that Spence was in with a different monster that he’s slain before.

The body language, energy, and execution were increasingly evident that this bout belonged to Crawford, and Spence was in deep waters he wasn’t ready to handle.

Despite getting the knockdowns and being in total command, Crawford never got reckless and wild trying to force the finish. Instead, he stayed composed, didn’t put himself in any bad position, and just read his opponent and took any advantage he wanted with no threat of a comeback. As the end seemed clear at the end of round 6, Spence toughed out a few more before the 9th and final round approached. With swollen eyes and not an ounce of impressive offense, Spence started to look more and more defeated and hurt with every strike he absorbed.

Crawford seeing the end in closer sight, decided to turn up the heat and go for the throat. Not going down due to heart, Spence was on his final straw before the referee jumped in to end any further damage. Crawford was the first to drop Spence, the first to finish Spence, and the first man to become a unified undisputed champion in two different weight divisions.

A possible rematch could be in order but again, why? Crawford has shown he is the best welterweight of this generation, so does a new challenge await? Does Bud move up in weight to test his skill and ultimately end up standing across from Canelo Álvarez? Many paths are on the table for Crawford, and he looks poised to make them all happen. A fighter who wasn’t given a chance is now calling the shots and putting everyone in his path in line to hail his greatness.

Where Spence goes is a question he and his team need to look into seriously. Can he make enough improvements and adjustments in a rematch? Does he move up and try to rebuild himself and not suffer such brutal weight cuts? Time will tell what happens next, but despite the loss, Spence is still one of the best in the world, just ran into someone better. Is this the beginning of the end for Spence? Or was it just not his night, and he bounces back to remind us just how good he really is?

Spence vs Crawford showed that Terence Crawford in the best fighter pound-for-pound

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-Kalani Lua – Franchise Sports Media

Follow Kalani on Twitter @klua11

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