Crawford vs. Kavaliauskas official scores lopsided in Terence’s favor
By Dean Berman: Challenger Egidijus ‘Mean Machine’ Kavaliauskas put in a valiant effort against WBO welterweight champion Terence ‘Bud’ Crawford (36-0, 27 KOs) before being stopped in the 9th round last Saturday night at Madison Square Garden in New York.
Kavaliauskas appeared to drop Crawford in round 3, and he fought well enough to win at least 3 if not 4 rounds of the fight. However, the official judges’ scores scorecards failed to reflect the impressive performance from the courageous 31-year-old Kavaliauskas. At the time of the stoppage in round 9, Crawford was ahead on all three scorecards: 79-72, 79-72, 78-73.
The official scores told a different story entirely from the fight that took place inside the ring last Saturday night. Not only did Kavaliauskas lose out on a knockdown in the 3rd round when the referee failed to give him credit for dropping Crawford, but he was on the receiving end of wide scores. Crawford arguably given the hardest fight of his career by Kavaliauskas, but you wouldn’t know it by looking at the scores.
Shakur Stevenson impressed with Kavaliauskas
“I grade it a B minus,” said Shakur Stevenson to Fighthype in giving his grade for Crawford’s performance against Kavaliauskas. “I felt like he could have done better early, but as the fight went on, he took over the fight. He adjusted well. That’s how Bud fights all the time. As each fight goes on, he gets better and better.
“I don’t think ‘Mean Machine’ is a bad fighter. I think everybody had Terence so widely above him. They made it like that. It’s the image that everybody else painted, but I don’t think he’s a bad fighter. I think he’s a good fighter, and he showed in the first three rounds how good he was,” said Stevenson in talking about Kavaliauskas.
The unbeaten WBO featherweight champion Stevenson isn’t the only one that liked what they saw from Kavaliauskas. Many boxing fans were surprised at how good the two-time Olympian was, as the media had written him off ahead of the fight. Kavaliauskas’s hand speed, and power that he showed early in the contest was impressive.
This writer had Kavaliauskas winning 4 of the first 5 rounds. He fought well enough to win the 6th as well. Kavaliauskas could have been ahead on scorecards at the time of the stoppage in the 9th. Adding the missed knockdown in round 3, Kavaliauskas looked to be winning going into round 9.
Stevenson views Porter as no match for Crawford
“I think Terence is going to box the s— out of Shawn [Porter],” said Shakur when asked how Porter will do against Crawford. “I think that Bud came here tonight and wanted to fight. But I think with Shawn, he’ll know that Shawn is real rough. He’ll get in there, and try and out-box him,” said Stevenson.
Shakur brings up a good point about Crawford changing tactics, and focusing on using his boxing skills against Porter. Crawford is not likely to go to war with Porter like he did against Kavaliauskas. If the money isn’t huge for Porter, he would be better off focusing on someone that is more stationary than Crawford. Porter struggles against mobile fighters. Crawford would use the Keith Thurman blueprint to beat him.