Crawford outguns Gamboa in nine
WBO lightweight champion Terence Crawford (24-0, 17 KOs) scored a spectacular 9th round KO against previously unbeaten Yuriokas Gamboa (23-1, 16 KOs) to retain his title on Saturday night at the CenturyLink Center in Omaha, Nebraska.
Crawford stepped into the ring in his own backyard for the first time as a professional in the first world title fight to be held in the city in 42 years - Joe Frazier defended the heavyweight world championship against Omaha's Ron Stander, winning by 5th-round knockout at the Civic Auditorium on May 25, 1972 - and it proved worth the wait. He and Gamboa - a former unified featherweight titleholder and 2004 Cuban Olympic gold medalist - produced a fight of the year contender.
The first four rounds were edged by Gamboa, landing the better shots while making Crawford miss. But in round 5, Crawford responded in style, dropping Gamboa and then punished him for the rest of the round. Gamboa came out of his corner firing powerful pot shots while on the move in Round 6. Crawford, however, kept his composure, landing his jab from a distance and counter punches and body shots when in close. In the 8th, Crawford knocked Gamboa down with a right hand to the head. And staggered Gamboa near the end of the round. In round 9, Gamboa fired back with a heavy right hand which rocked Crawford. But the champion recovered and rallied back, nailing Gamboa with a left hand that sent him back to the canvas. Gamboa’s legs were totally gone after he got back to his feet. He tried to clinch but Crawford continued to fire on him, a perfectly timed right uppercut put him down for the fourth and final time as referee Genaro Rodriguez wisely waved the fight off at 2:53 of the round.
"I told Gamboa he picked the wrong fighter and the wrong city and I was right," Crawford said. "I never felt any danger in the fight. I was warming up, getting used to his style the first couple of rounds, just wanted to test him out, see where he was and adjust. He caught me with a good shot. I got careless. I commend him. He caught me with a good shot I wasn't ready for, and I felt I came back strong.”
Other results on the card:
Matt Korobov W Jose Uzcategui UD 10
Mikael Zewski W Prince Doku Jr KO 4
Konstantin Ponomarev W Joseph De los Santos TKO 1
Johnny Determan NC Ernie Marquez NC 3
Vic Pasillas W Jiovany Fuentes UD 6
Casey Ramos W Guillermo Sanchez UD 6
Bernard Davis W Heath Cline UD 4
Cody Crowley W Ronnie Peterson KO 2