Terence Crawford unifies world titles after melting The Iceman Postol
By Daniel Zaldivar
July 23, 2016
LAS VEGAS - In front of a Las Vegas crowd which seemed to be more from Omaha, Nebraska, Terence Crawford adjusted and impressively shut down Viktor Postol's technical ability this past Saturday night at the MGM Grand Garden Arena.
Both fighters alternated in the first few rounds, but it was Crawford, 28, who diminished Postol's jab and showed exactly why he is considered the best in the 140 pound weight-division and a top pound-for-pound fighter. It was the fifth round that became the turning point for Crawford. Postol, who hails from Kiev, Ukraine, saw himself down three points on the scorecards after tasting the canvas twice. All three ringside judges had an even 38-38 up until this point (beginning of the fifth) and Postol could not impose his will on the fighter nicknamed "Bud."
Crawford (29-0, 20 KOs) utilized his speed and footwork to outbox the 32-year-old Postol, who let his frustration show in the eleventh after he was deducted a point for hitting behind the head on more than one occasion. The Ukrainian was the heavy underdog in the betting odds, which, before the bout, had many spectators believing these chances were to wide. Postol was coming into the bout off of the biggest victory of his career when he knocked out Lucas Matthysse in October of last year, and captured his first world [WBC] title. However, it was Crawford who made the reign short-lived, as he unified both world titles in a unanimous decision win that read scores of 118-107 (twice) and 117-108.
Crawford kept Postol off-balance with pivotal movement and was well in control. So much so, that he began toying and trash-talking Postol in the final round, which could be viewed as the only negative in the fight. Postol tried to press the fight in the concluding round, as he and his trainer, Freddie Roach, knew they needed a knockout to win. But, Crawford had already solved the puzzle by this point and it was to little to late for team Postol.
Bob Arum, Founder and CEO of Top Rank, had stated previously that the winner of this bout would be on the short list for a bout with Manny Pacquiao, who is scheduled to return in November. Another name which Arum has stated he is considering [for Pacquiao] is WBO title holder Jessie Vargas, who was in reported negotiations with England's Kell Brook until Brook made the shocking announcement that he would be going up two divisions to fight middleweight monster Gennady Golovkin. This was Crawford's first stint as the HBO pay-per-view headliner, and landing a possible matchup with a solidified pay-per-view star such as Pacquiao (58-6-2, 28 KOs) could help him take over one of the two slots by Floyd Mayweather and the current Filipino Senator.
Daniel Zaldivar is a boxing contributor for Frontproof Media & Page2sports.com. He is the founder of Z-BoxingNews (a partner with Frontproof Media), a YouTube channel that delivers the latest news, interviews, fighter workouts, & analysis within the sport. Check out the Z-BoxingNews YouTube channel HERE. Also follow on Twitter @Z_BoxingNews
(Featured photo: Harvey Feliciano - Z-BoxingNews/FrontProof Media)