Crawford wins UD over Beltran, Gradovich draws Velez

Terrance “Bud” Crawford 25-0 17KO’s dominated Reymundo Beltran 29-7-1 17KO’s in a one sided boxing clinic. Crawford did what most in the boxing media expected him to do, the only thing was he did it better than most expected against a legit contender.

Round one was a feeling out round where both fighters were establishing their distance. In round two Crawford turned southpaw and started landing good stiff jabs that stopped virtually all of Beltran’s offense before it even got started.

Round five Beltran got in some good shots that got Crawford’s attention but Crawford showed the reason why he is so good. As Beltran landed rather than retreat and reset Crawford fought back until he got the better of Beltran as if to say I’m the better fighter and whatever you can do I can do it better.

Crawford came out in the twelfth looking to close the show with a knockout and was landing at will until Beltran landed a left and right hook with about thirty seconds on the clock that stopped the onslaught to cause Crawford to cruise the last fifteen seconds of the fight.

Crawford is the real deal at 135lbs. but during the post-fight interview with Max Kellerman Crawford stated he was done at lightweight. The 140 pound division is full of interesting fights for Crawford and Top Rank promotes some big names that could create some interesting match ups.

Watching Crawford gives the feeling that I’m watching somebody that could be great “could be” not is but has shown some of the magic that has made some of my favorite fighters in history so memorable. Switching stances against a smaller albeit talented Gamboa, or Beltran isn’t the same thing as pulling it off against the top of the 140 pound division so I’ll wait until that happens before I jump on the bandwagon. But one thing is clear; Crawford is can’t miss for boxing fans. Boxing with aggression Crawford always has to get the last punch in a style that is TV and fan friendly.

Evgeny Gradovich 19-0-1 9KO’s fought Jason Velez 22-0-1 16KO’s to a draw in what was a bit of a controversial decision. Velez came out firing his jab and landing straight right hands through the guard of Gradovich who goes by the name “El Ruso Mexicano” (The Mexican Russian) because of his come forward swarming fight style. As expected by many in the boxing media Gradovich took a few rounds to get into his groove of coming forward and wearing down his opponent.

Velez started to slow a bit in the fourth and used the footwork that won him the early rounds less and less allowing Gradovich to go to work and land on the inside. The two fighters fought at a fast pace with Gradovich getting inside and Velez boxing from the outside but still landing jabs and good body work throughout the fight.

By round eight Gradovich was swarming Velez and took over in the punch count that Velez had lead for the early part of the fight. With neither fighter possessing the type of one punch knockout power that could end the fight; both landed good shots with Gradovich getting the better down the stretch.

Velez came out for the twelfth round looking to win and understanding he was down on the cards as trainer Abel Sanchez implored him to go out and give it all he had. Velez came out and won the twelfth round on my card and probably sneaked himself a draw by doing so in the minds of the judges.

Official scoring for the bout was 117-111 Gradovich, 115-113 Velez, 114-114 even. My scorecard was 115-113 for Gradovich, I gave Velez rounds one through three, seven, and the twelfth. Rounds four through six Gradovich won but Velez was still competitive so I’m not angry that it was called a draw.