By Marc Livitz: Terence Crawford put on a masterclass performance against overmatched and overwhelmed John Molina on Saturday night at the CenturyLink Center in Omaha, Nebraska. The universally recognized best junior welterweight in the world gave his hometown fans an enthralling show from start to finish before the championship contest ended with an eighth round stoppage. The TKO win was the twenty first knockout for the undefeated fighter from Omaha.
Crawford (30-0, 21 KO’s) was easily the more aggressive fighter from the opening bell. He tagged Molina (29-7, 23 KO’s) with quick, snapping jabs at will before he switched to southpaw midway into round one. His right jab set up a well placed left hook to the body. Terence continued to control the pace of the bout and keep John at his preferred range of distance, which allowed him to remain fighting as a lefty and hit a slowly moving target. Thirty seconds into the third, Molina took a chance and threw a wild right hook which caught Crawford across the face, but to not much avail due to the lack of power. The Covina, California fighter seemed to realize such a tactic may be his lone chance to win. Through one quarter of the contest, the champion from Omaha appeared to be in complete control.
Molina continued to absorb punches from various angles in the fourth. Crawford’s right jab was still active and fired from a height near his shoulder. John did his best to stalk his opponent and apply a decent amount of pressure, yet he found it to be beyond frustrating. Terence had an answer for everything he threw at him. A brief brawl of sorts broke out in the first few seconds of the sixth round. A straight left hand from Crawford landed flush a minute later. Molina’s efforts to hopefully land the kitchen sink meant larger and larger openings would appear for his adversary. His face was visibly reddened as the bell rang to begin round seven. Crawford continued to land at will and from all angles. This was target practice at its finest and the science at its sweetest.
The eighth was no different. Molina beckoned Crawford to keep punching and ultimately, this would lead to his undoing. A hard left to the body courtesy of a well placed shot from "Bud" Crawford sent Molina in a backpedal and into a corner. As he proceeded to unload a barrage of shots to the body and a few to the head, referee Mark Nelson stepped in with thirty seconds remaining to halt the abuse. Crawford retained his WBC, WBO and Ring Magazine titles with the victory.
Additional Results from Omaha
Ray Beltran KO 7 Mason Menard – Lightweight
Sean Monaghan UD 10 Fernando Castaneda - Light Heavyweight
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December 10, 2016