Terence Crawford knocked down but deserves more praise than criticism (Video)
To date, has Terence Crawford ever been knocked down as a pro?
Answer: No (officially) and yes (unofficially)
WBO Welterweight Champion Terence Crawford proved his mettle last night by fending off a fierce challenge in Egidijus Kavaliauskas. Seemingly rocked early on, Crawford gritted his teeth and made the necessary adjustments to carry him to an impressive 9th Round stoppage.
...And that's why he may be the best in the world.
However, Saturday night's bout wasn't without a first as Terence Crawford appeared to be legitimately floored in Round 3. It wasn't beautiful and was mistakenly waved off as a slip by the referee, but it appeared to be a clear knockdown nonetheless.
Credit to Kavaliauskas for being well-prepared and executing a fine gameplan. He gave TC more problems than anyone previously sans, perhaps, Yuriorkis Gamboa in 2014.
"It was obviously a knockdown," famed boxing commentator Max Kellerman told iFL TV.
"Crawford came out and wasn't doing the things (he should have)." You don't just get to do whatever you want."
"... He would move in as a southpaw and Kavaliauskas was timing him and finding the right hand. He hit him with a right hand and knocked him down. CLEAN knockdown."
Perhaps you will judge for yourself by watching the video attached.
Crawford deserves more praise than criticism
Everyone gets floored.... Fight legends Muhammad Ali, Sugar Ray Robinson, Rocky Marciano, Roberto Duran, James Toney and Roy Jones, Jr were floored as young men who were near or in their respective primes.
And not long ago, Vasyl Lomachenko, arguably the world's best fighter, was floored against Jorge Linares.
As long as a fighter isn't floored with frequency, what's most critical is how he responds to being knocked down. That's more consequential than the knockdown itself.
Does he turn into a defensive shell? Does he lose his cool and pursue his opponent with reckless abandon?
Or does he remain composed and confident, and learn from the mistake that led to the knockdown?
On Saturday night, Crawford arose from the knockdown like a true champion and continued to pursue his foe but did so with his hands higher than before. Although he subsequently slowed his pace a bit, he was still aggressive and throwing combinations but looked to pick his shots all while working behind a high guard. He would also switch from southpaw to orthodox in the latter rounds.
Thus far, Crawford seems to have a pretty good beard. And, based on what happened Saturday night, knocking TC down may very well work against an opponent if he's not on TC's level.
He simply gets angry, makes the proper adjustments and implements a more intelligent, more dangerous form of whoop ass going forward.