Published: Tue, October 16, 2018
Sport | By

Terence Crawford stops Jose Benavidez with 12th-round barrage

Terence Crawford stops Jose Benavidez with 12th-round barrage

It was another day at the office for Terence Crawford, who returned to his home in Omaha, Nebraska for another world title defense.

Crawford used an uppercut to Benavidez's chin to knock him down the first time in the 12th and final round and then consecutive rights to put him down a second, prompting referee Celestino Ruiz to stop the fight with 18 seconds left. Crawford (33-0, 24 knockouts) last fought June 9, stopping Jeff Horn in the ninth round in Las Vegas.

"I gave a hell of a fight to the best fighter in the world", Benavidez said. The WBO welterweight champion expects Benavidez to respect him by the time things are settled in the ring Saturday night.

Crawford and Benavidez had bickered throughout the run-up to Saturday's fight, with Crawford taking a wild swing at his rival on Friday at the weigh-in after initially being shoved.

Benavidez will be fighting for the third time since being shot multiple times in August 2016 in his hometown of Phoenix.

"Hear me now: I'm ready to make that fight next", Arum said.

Crawford landed more punches than Benavidez (186 to 90) and essentially skipped over the jab to focus on power punches, which he landed with brutal effectiveness and efficiency (131 of 302 thrown, 43%). "I looked over to the corner and he was taking deep breaths, so I said, 'Oh, he's exhausted.' I stepped it up". Boxing politics aside, the division is stacked with everyone from Errol Spence and Keith Thurman to Shawn Porter and, potentially, Mikey Garcia. "Everything else will fall into place".

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