By Xavier Porter | www.brooklynfights.com | April 21, 2019

In a packed Madison Square Garden, with well over 14,091 people in attendance, the current WBO Welterweight Champion and consensus number one ranked fighter held no punches back (no pun intended) as he broke-down the former (2x) Super Lightweight Champion Khan in six rounds by TKO stoppage.

WBO Welterweight Championship – 12 Rounds

TERENCE CRAWFORD, Omaha, NE (34-0, 25 KOs) vs AMIR KHAN, Bolton, GBR (33-4, 20 KOs)

Both Crawford and Khan had electric ring entrances but in the end, there was one man standing and that man was Crawford

Crawford landed a powerful right hand shot on the chin of Khan and followed up with a left hook to knock his opponent down late in the first round. Khan was unsteady for the remainder of the round but he fought off the onslaught of Crawford to make it out of the round.

As the fight progressed, Crawford’s focus never wavered as he continued to land beautifully timed, accurate punches to both the head and body of Khan. At times, Khan flurried with punches, but nothing that had substantial power to keep the undefeated champion from coming forward with his seek and destroy focus.

In round three, Khan landed a quick right hand to the chin of Crawford. The current champion immediately from orthodox stance to his patented southpaw stance which spelled the beginning to the end for Khan.

Crawford often switched stances like a wave in the ocean. Crawford picked up his punch output and began pounding away at Khan’s body. Crawford’s offensive attack highlighted several combinations of which Khan had no answer for.

In the six and final round, Crawford landed a brutal uppercut to the body of Khan, which appeared to land underneath the belt line. Khan, writhing in pain, was awarded five minutes to gather himself. After speaking with his trainer (Virgil Hunter), the fight was called as it was decided that Khan could not continue, thus giving Crawford another knockout win on his already impressive resume.

The question that fight fans, media, and other fighters have been asking is: DID AMIR KHAN KHAN?

Only Khan could answer that question, as he stated to the media during the post-fight conference:

“I didn’t quit. I got hit underneath my belt. It wasn’t intentional but it hurt. I spoke with my trainer and he decided to call the fight off.”

“I was hurt. I don’t know if I could’ve continued. All I know is that I was hurting a lot. I take nothing away from Crawford. He’s a great fighter.”

Crawford immediately interjected:

“C’mon! You didn’t quit?”

“Benavidez and Gamboa were 10 times faster than him.”

“I could tell I was breaking him down. It was just a matter of time. I just took my time. I was disappointed the corner stopped the fight in that manner, but Virgil is a great coach, and he was looking out for his fighter. I know he didn’t want to go out like that.”

“The fight I want next is Errol Spence,” Crawford said. “Whenever he is ready, he can come and get it.”

For Khan, there’s the likelihood that he will finish his career with one last fight against his arch nemesis, former IBF Welterweight Champion Kell Brook, who was also in attendance to watch the fight.

For Crawford, hopefully his promoter (Bob Arum, Top Rank chairman) can make his dreams come true with a fight against current IBF Welterweight Champion Errol Spence.

“We want to fight Errol Spence. Everyone wants the fight. There is one guy stopping it, and that is Al Haymon,” said Arum.

NABF Lightweight Title – 12 Rounds

TEOFIMO LOPEZ, Brooklyn, NY (12-0, 10 KOs) vs EDIS TATLI, Helsinki, FIN (31-2, 10 KOs)

Lopez, who on paper, fought his most experienced fighter to date in Tatli, took his time to break down his opponent, ultimately scoring a fifth round stoppage after landing a series of shots to the body.

Referee Ron Lipton, on one the best referees in boxing, began his the ten count once Tatli went to the floor after being hit with a straight hand to the body.

Tatli, fighting for the first time in the United States, could not recover as the fight was called at (1:52) of the fifth round.

Although Lopez did not showcase an exclusive “Fortnite dance” he did showcase the infamous “pressure pump” that basketball icon Lebron James often displays when he delivers a monstrous play on the court.

Afterwards, Lopez had this to say regarding his performance:

“I didn’t have the best camp, but I did what I needed to do and came out victorious. I knew I was going to get him with a body shot. I softened him up and finished him.”

“I want a world title shot next. That’s what I want. We promised to take over the show, and once again, I took it over. I’m ready for Richard Commey or the WBC title. As long as it’s for a title, I am ready to go. No one can take my power.”

Lopez expects to get a world title shot in his next fight, scheduled for this upcoming July.

IBF Intercontinental, NABO Featherweight Title – 10 Rounds

SHAKUR STEVENSON, Newark, NJ (10-0, 6 KOs) vs CHRISTOPHER DIAZ, Barranquitas, PR (24-1, 16 KOs)

The pride of Newark, NY and the Olympic 2016 Silver Medalist put on a spectacular performance against former title contender Diaz, winning a clear-cut unanimous decision (100-90-99-91, 98-92).

Although the crowd booed towards the end of the tenth round due to a lack of action between the two featherweights, Stevenson maintained his composure and focused on the most important aspect of the fight: the victory.

Stevenson controlled the entire pace of the fight, landing countless jabs to both the body and head of Daiz. Stevenson was extremely comfortable, landing lead lefts to the face and chin of Diaz who showed his frustration by swinging wildly and missing with big hooks and right hands.

By the fifth round, Stevenson’s game plan was in full effect as he began to sit down and dig shots to the body of Diaz. In the six round, Diaz’ legs buckled from a hard left hand from Stevenson.

Stevenson, a student of the game, took his time, remained calm, managed the distance, and didn’t get discouraged at the many times that Diaz would place his left foot on his lead right foot, hoping to land a punch while standing on his foot.

Afterwards, Stevenson shared his thoughts on the fight and who he wants to face next:

“I take nothing away from Christopher Diaz. He’s a great fighter, but I came in there to outbox him, and that’s exactly what I did.”

“I’m the best fighter a 126lb and I’m coming. My defense, my skills, I’m the smartest fighter at 126lb. Listen, I want all the champions at 126 pounds. Josh Warrington is someone I want to fight. I am ready. I’ll take Oscar Valdez, anyone next.”

Lightweight – 10 Rounds

FELIX VERDEJOS, San Juan, P.R. (24-1, 16 KOs) vs BRYAN VASQUEZ, San Jose, C.R. (37-3, 20 KOs)

In a hard fought ten rounds, Puerto Rican Lightweight sensation Felix Verdejo improved to (25-1, 16 KOs) against the tough Bryan Vasquez (37-4, 20 KOs), winning by way of unanimous decision (98-92, 96-93, 2x).

Verdejo controlled the entire bout as the former WBA Interim Super Featherweight Champion Vasquez showed minimal glimpses of offensive strategy from his previous championship wins.

The question now is who will Top Rank Boxing match Verdejo with next? Verdejo needs a lot of work as it relates to matching up against the top of the lightweights in his division, namely his stable mate, power-punching Teofimo Lopez.

“It was an honor for me to get a big victory in front of my fans at Madison Square Garden. I defeated a great fighter in Vasquez. I worked hard for this fight. The jab and body punches were key.

“I’m going to keep working harder and harder to get even better. I am looking for a world title opportunity soon.”

photos courtesy of: https://www.instagram.com/mvpboxpics/

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