Boxing 2021 / RECAP
As the boxing scene closes out 2021, we saw Terrance Crawford showing the world why he is one of the best pound-for-pound fighters, and Vasiliy Lomachenko served notice that he has the skills left to unite the lightweight (135 lb.) title .
Terrance Crawford fought Shawn Porter who has fought the best of his division and never been stopped. Even in defeat, Porter always pushed his opponents as he lost close decisions against the then undefeated Keith Thurman, Kell Brooks, and undefeated Errol Spence, Jr . The latter fight was a split decision and no one ever dominated him.
The first half of the fight was a typical Porter fight … close. Crawford had trouble figuring out Porter’s awkward style . The first nine rounds were close, but Crawford looked like he was starting to open up just enough to take a lead on my scorecard.
In the tenth round, Crawford sent Porter down with a left uppercut at the beginning of the round . Crawford went for the kill as he unleashed punches in bunches. Crawford let loose a combination that ended with a left to the head of Porter, sending Porter to the canvas a second time. Porter’s corner, led by Porter’s dad, called off the fight.
Crawford did what other welterweights could not do: stop Shawn Porter. And now there is one fight left … Crawford vs Spence, Jr., featuring two undefeated welterweight champions.
Vasiliy Lomachenko lost to Teofimo Lopez fourteen months ago and he fought the fight with an injured shoulder. Since then, he defeated Masayoshi Nakatani in June by TKO before defeating Richard Commey, a former lightweight champion with a powerful right hand, this past weekend.
Lomachenko showed us the Lomachenko of old as he boxed and maneuvered his opponent to land accurate shots. Lomachenko landed 248 punches compared to seventy-three for Commey who actually threw more punches. Lomachenko landed 45% of his punches and 58% of his power shots. His defensive skills threw off Commey as Commey only landed 17% of his punches.
In the seventh round, Lomachenko landed thirty-six punches and knocked Commey down. As the round proceeded, Lomachenko looked to Commey’s corner as he signaled to them, “are you not going to stop the fight?” They did not and Commey went the distance as he tried to turn the tide, but he failed. I had the fight 120-107 and the only round in which Commey was even competitive was the first round. Two judges had it 119-108, giving Commey one round, whereas the other judge had the score 117-110, giving Commey three rounds.
Nonito Donaire is the oldest bantamweight champion at 39 and he did the unusual; he moved from featherweight down to bantamweight to claim the championship. He faced his fellow Philippine fighter, Reymart Gaballo, a much younger and undefeated fighter with power. The bout was actually a close one as both fighters landed a similar number of punches and Donaire had trouble landing his left hook consistently even though he landed his right hand.
That is until the fourth round where Donaire landed the picture-perfect left hook to the body, a classic liver shot that sent Gaballo down. Gaballo got up at the count of seven but he stumbled back to the canvas and the fight was stopped.