Terence Crawford was sharp vs. Ray Beltran (Photo: Naoki Fukuda)
By Chris Robinson
On Saturday night, reining WBO lightweight champion Terence Crawford was razor sharp in winning a commanding decision over former title challenger and proven threat Ray Beltran.
Often switching from orthodox to southpaw throughout the match, Crawford (25-0, 17 KO’s) just had too much grit and versatility on his favor, as scorecards reading 120-108 and 119-109 twice were in the favor of ‘Bud’.
Crawford came into the fighting weighing 153 pounds, a serious weight gain in one day from the lightweight limit of 135, and he admits that a move to the junior welterweight division is the next ideal step for him.
The welterweight ranks are bustling with some of the most talented and colorful fighters in the sport. One week prior to Crawford’s victory, WBO welterweight champion Manny Pacquiao again impressed, outclassing former titlist Chris Algieri during a six-knockdown, unanimous decision whitewashing.
Pacquiao is eyeing a move back to 140 pounds and it’s only natural to look at the rising Crawford as a potential opponent one day.
Speaking with Top Rank promoter Bob Arum, who handles the career of each man, he admits it is a thought that has crossed his mind.
“Absolutely,” Arum stated prior to the Beltran melee. “Not just yet, but you know, when people see more of him and more of his ability. He certainly would be, down the line, a viable opponent for Manny.”
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Chris Robinson can be reached at CRobinson@hustleboss.com