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Crawford vs. Brook: Kell predicting a ‘massive upset’ on Saturday

Kell Brook Terence Crawford

By Jim Maltzman: Kell Brook says he won’t be shocked after taking out WBO welterweight champion Terence ‘Bud’ Crawford on Saturday night in ‘The Bubble’ at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Like Crawford, Brook (39-2, 27 KOs) feels that he’s an elite fighter too, but he’s bigger and more powerful than him. Kell feels that he has the technical ability to match whatever Crawford brings to the ring in this fight.

One hint that former IBF welterweight champion Brook will do well is the problems that Amir Khan gave Crawford in 2019. Khan fought surprisingly well against Crawford until he was pulled from the fight by his trainer after being hit with a low blow.

Some boxing fans believe that Crawford intentionally fouled Khan out of frustration because he wasn’t dominating him the way that he was supposed to. Brook would likely beat Khan in a more decisive way than Crawford but without the need to rough him up with low blows and such to get the win.

Kell, 34, is feeling confident right now after finishing up 20 weeks of continuous training in preparation to rip the WBO 147lb title from Crawford.

Kell Brook Terence Crawford

Brook: I’m also an elite fighter

“This is a massive challenge, and for me to go out and win, I’ve got to box better than I have at any time in my career,” Brook said to Gareth A Davies about his fight against Crawford.

“I went out and made this title fight against arguably the best fighter in the world. I’ve always wanted to be in with the best fighter in the world.

“I’m also an elite fighter,” Brook said. “He’s never boxed anybody with the size, self-belief, and power that I’ve got. He knows this as well.

“There’s not much I can sit here and say that he does bad, but he does get hit,” Kell said of Crawford. “Also, I’m similar to him in that I’ve got perfect timing, and I’ve got a very good jab.

“I’m technically sharp, I’ve got self-belief, and I can punch really hard. And I’m a big natural heavy-hitting welterweight. So, it’s a real fight, and he knows that. It’s going to be one hell of a fight,” Brook said of his showdown with Crawford.

Many people overlook the fact that Brook is an elite fighter like Crawford, and they’re counting him out already. One reason for boxing fans overlooking Brook is the long period of time since he’s been in with a good opponent.

All the important things that Brook did with his career happened years ago, and he’s not been able to redeem himself since his back to back defeats against Gennady Golovkin and Errol Spence Jr in 2016 and 2017.

Brook has been slow in coming back from those two defeats, and he should have already started fighting the top fighters by now. After Brook lost his IBF welterweight title to Spence in 2017, he announced that he was moving up to 154.

Kell Brook Terence Crawford

But for whatever reason, Brook never took on any of the good junior-middleweights after moving up. It could be that he wasn’t motivated properly to campaign at 154 for the lack of popular fighters in the division.

It wasn’t until recently that Jermell Charlo began making a name for himself. Brook would have gained nothing fighting him in 2018 and 2019.

Kell to do everything to get the victory

“I’ve done everything asked of me in this training camp,” Kell said about his preparation for his fight with Terence. “I’ve positive, and I’m a happy fighter. The weight is right, the fitness is there, and the self-belief, I’m happy, and I’m a dangerous man.

“I’m going to need to use everything in my arsenal to get this victory. I’m going to need to be on point.

“My eyes are going to be locked onto Terence from round one, and I’m going to go out there and execute the game plan that I’ve got. It’s 36 minutes of my life that I’m going to put down.

“I’m going to give it my absolute all. I believe I’m a very hard man to beat when I’ve got this in my heart with the focus I’ve got. There’s been a lot of shocks in boxing,” Brook said.

The fighters who have had some degree of success against Crawford, Yuriorkis Gamboa, Victor Postol, and Briedis Prescott fought to him. Although Crawford is an excellent counter puncher, he doesn’t look comfortable when his opponents throw many punches.

Counter punchers often struggle against fighters with high work rates, as they can’t keep up with all the shots thrown at them.

Kell Brook Terence Crawford

There is a natural limit to the number of shots that a counter puncher can respond to. Brook’s best chance of winning is to put it on Crawford and force him into a war of attrition on Saturday.

If Brook fights at a slow pace the way Crawford prefers to fight, he’ll lose. Crawford needs the action to be slow for him to jab, potshot, and counter his way to a win.

Brook: I won’t be shocked when I take Crawford out

“This is one of those fights where people will be shocked when I come out with the win,” Brook said. “You’re going to see on the scales that this is probably the best shape I’ve ever been in my life.

“It’s been 18, 18, 20 weeks [of training]. I’ve always believed this fight was going to come off, so I’ve been silently training through all of this.

“At 34, age is just a number, and I’m really enjoying it. This is what excites me, the adrenalin, and knowing that I can be victorious. I can go out there and make history in this sport.

“I truly believe this is going to be a massive upset. I know when the bell rings, I’m going to go out there and stun the world. I’m going to be the best that I can possibly be on the night on the 14th.

“I’m not normal, and I believe I’m very special. And I’m going to go in there, and I’m not going to be shocked when I take him out.

“As much as it is a big thing to beat him, I believe it’s written for me to go out and shock the world again,” said Brook.

Interestingly, Top Rank has included a rematch clause in the contract or the Crawford vs. Brook fight. Top Rank promoter Bob Arum recently said that he didn’t like rematch clauses when talking about the Vasily Lomachenko vs. Teofimo Lopez contest last October.

For Arum to have included a reach clause for the Crawford-Brook fight, it suggests strongly that he’s concerned that Terence may lose this fight. If he believes that Crawford would win with a 100% certainty, he likely wouldn’t have included a rematch clause.

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